International News

Gayle ready to apologise if needed to return to Windies

It’s a development that could do West Indies cricket a world of good. The tiff between the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) and former captain Chris Gayle could end soon.

The reconciliatory steps were taken by West Indies Players Association’s vice-president Wavell Hinds, who said, “Gayle is prepared to answer the charges as honestly as he can and if there is a need to say sorry, I think he will say sorry.

“In no shape or form does Chris think he is above West Indies cricket and he has stated that quite clearly to me … Where there are claims that he can substantiate totally, he can put to the board that he has been unfairly done or been disrespected, he will stand by them.”

“I have known Chris for many years, I know him like a brother and as a friend. He is a very humble guy and he is prepared to do what is necessary to play,” Hinds said in an interview to a website.

Hinds’s revelations come close on the heels of a letter the WICB has written to Gayle where the board was keen to meet him and resolve the impasse over his exclusion from the national team.

The letter written by WICB CEO Ernest Hilaire states : “The Board does recognise your contributions to West Indies cricket and the value which you bring to a West Indies team; and remains available to meet with you, should you be willing to do so, so that we can bring some resolution to this matter. We await your response to discuss a mutually acceptable way forward.”

Gayle was left out of the West Indies squad for the ongoing Test series against India after a June 14 meeting to sort out their differences ended on a stormy note.

The feud originally started when Gayle criticised the WICB for leaving him in a lurch as he battled fitness issues.

Hilaire indicated that the June 14 meeting failed because “the discussions were repeatedly diverted to peripheral issues instead of being focussed on finding a constructive solution to the matter before us”.

The board is also miffed with WIPA chief Dinanath Ramnarine, who it alleged threatened Hilaire with a chair during the June 14 meeting.

“WIPA should either facilitate an apology to the CEO from Ramnarine, together with an assurance/ undertaking that he will not engage in any physical or verbal threats during meetings with representatives of the West Indies Cricket Board or identify alternative WIPA representatives to engage in meetings with the WICB,” the board said in a statement.

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