“They need to come clear and say what Chris Gayle should apologise for, and what should Chris Gayle retract, what are the terms, really and truly,” Gayle told the Caribbean Media Corporation. “So they need to make it clear, rather than stating just one particular thing and leaving the public to speculate again, and just make this one big issue which I’m tired of, so they need to just cut it out now.”
Gayle also said he thought the WICB was “playing mind games” and that he would address their demands at the end of the Regional Super50 in Guyana, where he is leading Jamaica’s campaign.
“I received a message about the apology at a team meeting the day before we [Jamaica] had to play the Leewards Islands here [last Thursday] in the middle of a regional tournament,” Gayle said. “I think they [WICB] are playing mind games with Chris Gayle. I have told them that I want to focus on winning this tournament for Jamaica and I will deal with the apology issue at the end of this competition.
“I don’t think the board wants to solve this issue. This needs to be closed as soon as possible and they need to be clear on what I should apologise for. State what in the interview I need to retract or apologise for.”
On October 20, the WICB had issued a statement saying, “Having received reports and reviewed correspondence between Chris Gayle and the West Indies Cricket Board and the West Indies Team Management and taking into consideration public statements made by Gayle with regard to the board and its officers, the board requires that Gayle withdraws his comments in order to be considered for selection to the West Indies team.”
Relations between Gayle and the board had broken down after he gave an interview in April to a radio station during which he was scathing about both the board and coach Ottis Gibson. After attempts at reconciliation failed, and Gayle was left out of the squad for the home series against India, he released a public statement, in which he traced the beginning of the dispute back to 2009, when, he said, Hilaire had cast doubts on his ability to captain the team.
Gayle has not played for West Indies since the 2011 World Cup. Since then he has been an integral part of Royal Challengers Bangalore’s squad in their IPL and Champions League Twenty20 campaigns, finishing as the leading run-getter in the IPL. His impasse with the board had escalated to a level where the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) heads of government had become involved.
West Indies are currently touring Bangladesh, after which they will go to India to play three Tests and five ODIs.