BRIDGETOWN: West Indies batsman Chris Gayle described West Indies Cricket Board efforts to reconcile with him as “a sham and a mockery” on Friday, saying he realised he was unwanted by the board.
Gayle, overlooked for selection to the West Indies side now hosting test matches against India, said he has decided not to wait on the WICB any longer but will explore opportunities available to him elsewhere.
“I see it as a scam to fool the people of the West Indies and the world into believing that they were serious about my returning to West Indies cricket,” Gayle said.
“My eyes are open, my heart is clean, my conscience is clear and the voice of reason is loud in my ears telling me that I should close this chapter in my life.
The dashing left-handed opener signed a deal on Thursday worth more than US $265,000 to play in Australia's expanded Twenty20 Big Bash for the Sydney Thunder.
The controversial former captain's rift with the WICB came after comments he made during an interview on a radio station in his native Jamaica in April.
“I am not going to be the WICB's whipping boy... We as West Indies players are admired throughout the World for our honesty and sportsmanship.
“Yet the custodians of West Indies cricket, the people who are responsible for the development of our heritage sport, have not dealt with us honestly.”
Gayle said it was his understanding that the WICB and Jamaican cricket boards met to discuss his situation but that he was told nothing.
“I have now reached the stage where I have to say that enough is enough,” he said.
“I can only assume without any positive feedback there has been no resolution.
“There is a disciplinary process in West Indies cricket. Yet the (board) is allowed to be the complainant, as well as policeman, judge, jury and executioner in my case. When I tried to respond to the accusations made against me, I am deemed to be out of place and trying to destroy West Indies cricket.
“I am now coming close to the end of my shelf-life as a cricketer... and must concentrate on providing for my family now and in the future.”
Gayle said he still held out hope that he could still play again for his native Jamaica and West Indies.
“I wish to make it abundantly clear that I have not yet retired from any form of the game and remain available for selection for both Jamaica and West Indies,” he said.
“However, this is entirely out of my hands.”
Gayle appealed to his West Indies teammates to stand up to WICB officials about his situation.
“West Indies cricket is different from the West Indies Cricket Board,” he said.
“West Indies cricket and West Indies cricketers need help. Since you are the people who represent the fans and all the other stakeholders, it is time for you to act.”