Karachi: Explosive West Indies opening batsman Chris Gayle has said that he “stands by his comments” over feelings of displeasure at his exit from the Jamaica Tallawahs team in the Caribbean Premier League (CPL).
However, the 40-year-old admitted that his description of former West Indies teammate Ramnaresh Sarwan as “worse than the coronavirus” were “damaging”.
Last month, Gayle came on social media after being dropped from Tallawahs. He posted a series of videos on his Youtube channel where he bashed the franchise’s management and his former teammate.
Sarwan denied the allegations made on him and called his outburst as “unfortunate”.
Gayle was summoned to explain his comments and he tried to clear the things he said. “I made these videos with one single intention, to explain to the fans in Jamaica the reasons behind what has now become my second departure from the Tallawahs franchise,” said Gayle in an official statement released on the CPL website on Friday.
“It was my greatest wish to finish my CPL career in Jamaica, playing in front of my home crowd at Sabina Park with the franchise that I had previously led to two CPL titles,” he added.
“In so far as my resentment at the treatment, I stand by my comments in those videos. My words were spoken from the heart,” he added.
He further admitted that such remarks may be viewed as damaging to Cricket West Indies, and to the CPL Tournament and its brand.
“It was never my intention to damage the T20 tournament, as playing in the CPL has guaranteed an opportunity for the past seven years to play in front of the great fans of the Caribbean. This is a privilege that I genuinely appreciate and have never taken for granted,” he added.
Gayle, who has since joined the St Lucia Zouks for this year’s edition of the CPL slated to start in August, led the Tallahwahs to the title in 2013 and 2016.
The CPL Committee also decided that there was no need to constitute a tribunal in the matter related to Gayle’s outburst after Gayle assured that he would ‘act in good faith’. The Committee also noted that the matter was closed.