Chris Gayle has hit back at West Indies fast-bowling great Curtly Ambrose for his criticism of the opening batter ahead of the T20 World Cup 2021, calling out Ambrose for “being negative”, saying that he is “finished” with Ambrose and that has “no respect” for him.
Ambrose had earlier called into question Gayle’s spot in the West Indies side on account of his his slim batting returns in the lead up to the T20 World Cup, saying that the 42-year-old was “not an automatic selection” for the ICC tournament as he had “no scores of significance” of late.
“No, he [Gayle] is not an automatic choice for me,” said Ambrose. “The few home series [that West Indies] just played, he had no scores of significance, and I have said before that if he did not do well in those home series, he should not go to the World Cup.
“However, he will be at the World Cup, but for me, he is definitely not an automatic choice for starting… If he gets it going on the day, he can be destructive, but he has not done much in the last 18 months or so to really make me think he will set the World Cup alight.”
Gayle, responding to Ambrose’s comments on Tuesday, said: “I am finished with Curtly Ambrose. I have no respect, any time I see him I will tell him as well – ‘Stop being negative, support the team ahead of the World Cup.’ This team has been selected and we need past players to support us. We need that, we don’t need negative energy. In other teams, their past players support their teams, why can’t our own support us in a big tournament like this?
“We have won the tournament twice and we will be going for the third title. The team has seen what is happening. It is going to reflect on the team. If the past players continue being negative, I am Chris Gayle Universe Boss is going to be disrespectful, disrespectful verbally in their face. In the media as well. I am not going to take anything from any senior player. Curtly Ambrose pull your socks up, alright? Support for West Indies, ok? Support West Indies, that is the thing.”
Gayle, who left the IPL 2021 bubble to prepare ahead of the T20 World Cup, made a return to the T20I team in March after a two-year hiatus. In 16 innings, Gayle has crossed 50 only once, but retained his spot in the main squad ahead for the ICC tournament, having played all preceding editions of the World Cup.
West Indies will begin their T20 World Cup campaign against England on October 23 – here’s the full list of fixtures for the tournament.