West Indies’ third ODI against India appeared to be the last international match for Chris Gayle but the ‘Universe Boss’ has suggested after the game that he has not yet retired.
Gayle played the third ODI, which India won by six wickets under D/L method, with a special ‘301’ jersey -- indicating the number of ODIs he has featured in throughout his career, a record for any cricketer from the West Indies.
The Jamaican, who made 72 off 41 balls, was applauded by the Indian players as he walked off after being dismissed in the 12th over of West Indies innings. He raised his bat, helmet perched on top of it, and the crowd continued to cheer, wondering if it was the last time they would see him bat.
But after the game, Gayle dismissed suggestions that this was his farewell game.
“I didn’t announce anything...any retirement,” he said in a short video posted by Cricket West Indies, when asked about his ODI retirement. Asked if he will still be around, he said, “Yeah, until further notice.”
Gayle had earlier announced that the World Cup 2019 would be his last international assignment, before revealing a change of plans towards the end of the tournament.
During the World Cup, he said he wanted to play the ODIs and Tests in the home series against India, possibly setting up a farewell Test at his hometown Kingston.
However, Gayle was not selected for the two-match Test series, which made it likelier that he might have played his last international match on Wednesday.
At the a post-match press conference, West Indies captain Jason Holder said, “To my knowledge he hasn’t retired from international cricket.”
“But today was an example of his career. The knock he played was outstanding. He got us off to a really good start. He was entertaining, he showed presence, and that’s just what people have come to expect of Chris Gayle over the years.”
Kohli lauds former team-mate
Kohli described the 39-year-old Gayle as an icon and “gem of a human being” who was always there to help youngsters. The duo was earlier together in the IPL side Royal Challengers Bangalore.
“I would like to congratulate him for a great career, playing for the West Indies. He has done so much for West Indies cricket and he is icon all over the world. He is one of the nicest human beings around, that for me is his biggest quality,” Kohli said.
“Everyone knows about his cricket but I think the kind of person he is, so helpful with youngsters, so fun loving and always smiling even in the most pressure situations. For me, Chris Gayle the person is the best part of him. I have been fortunate to spend a lot of time as a friend and get to know him as a person. He is a gem of a human being and I think he can be really proud of that,” he added.
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