Chris Gayle, the Universe Boss, is all set to join St Lucia Zouks in the Caribbean Premier League (CPL) 2020 this season. The star opening batsman was released by his former franchise Jamaica Tallawahs ahead of the season.
Tallawahs bought him back in the last season and Gayle also had a great start of the tournament as he made 116 in his second game, but a dip in form saw him ending the season with 243 runs across ten innings as Tallawahs finished with the wooden spoon last season. St. Lucia also didn’t perform well last season as they were the other team to be knocked out in league stage.
Now, in St Lucia Zouks, Gayle will join the likes of Daren Sammy, who has also been retained by the franchise this season. In February this year, the St Lucia franchise was purchased by KPH Dream Cricket Private Limited, Kings XI Punjab’s parent company, owner of the team Gayle represents in Indian Premier League. The franchise also appointed Andy Flower as its head coach.
Gayle is one of the iconic players in T20 cricket, the swashbuckling batsman represented the Tallawahs in the first four CPL seasons, before he spent the next two years with St Kitts and Nevis Patriots.
Welcoming the legend in his side, the captain Daren Sammy said, “This is great news for St Lucia Zouks and for me as a captain to have the ‘Universe Boss’ on my side. Chris is one of the most successful T20 batsmen in the world and with his experience with our young openers, a lot can be learnt from Chris.
“I welcome him to the Zouks franchise. Chris will be in St Lucia and the fans will be happy that Jamaica has released him. I will have a motivated Chris Gayle looking to prove a point that he is one of the leading T20 batsmen in the world. I can’t wait for CPL 2020 and hopefully the coronavirus will be under control and we can have an exciting T20 tournament.”
The newly appointed coach Flower also showered his praises on the left-hander as he quipped, “It’s brilliant news that we have been able to get Chris Gayle with us at this year’s CPL 2020,” Flower said. “I have got a long association with Chris running all the way back to his debut Test match in Trinidad back in 2000. I’ve seen his exploits in all three forms of the game and I am really looking forward to working with him and Daren Sammy toward a special year for St Lucia cricket.”
Chris Gayle is an asset to any team in the T20 format, the Jamaican represents a number of franchises across the globe. This year’s CPL is scheduled to held between August 19 and September 26, but the COVID-19 situation has, so far, put all the plans in jeopardy. The organisers are currently exploring all the possibilities before coming to any decision.