Veteran Chris Gayle sets his sights on third World T20 title

Sphiwe Masilela

West Indies veteran batsman, Chris Gayle has vowed to work extremely hard in the upcoming T20 international series to make sure he books his spot in the world T20 squad later this year. 

Gayle was named in the Windies’ 14-man squad for the three-game T20 international series against Sri Lanka, which starts in Antigua on Wednesday. 

“I want to start off by winning the series but the bigger picture is actually to get three T20 titles under my belt,” Gayle, who is now 41 years old, told a media conference.

“But I’ll also focus on the bigger picture, which is winning a third T20 world title with the West Indies later this year. That’s the goal I’m setting in my head”. 

Gayle, who was part of the World T20-winning sides in 2012 and 2016, played the last of his 58, T20 internationals against England in March 2019. 

When it comes to T20, Gayle is the recognised master. He has a T20 record of 1 627 runs with a highest score of 117 at an average of over 32. Not only is his tally of 22 centuries in all T20 cricket a world record, it is 14 more than anyone else. Australians, David Warner, Aaron Finch and Michael Klinger have all hit eight. 

“It’s really good to be back. Hopefully, I can perform and help the team into a winning position,” said Gayle.

“The World Cup seems a long way away but by the time you blink it is World Cup time.” 

The Windies will attempt to defend their title in India in October and November.