• SEARCH
  • MY CART    0

    Your cart is currently empty.

Attiitude.com Brand Ambassador: Lothario off the pitch, Six machine on it - Daily Mail Online

Posted on 23 August 2017

Chris Gayle, who has been dramatically recalled to West Indies’ one-day side for next month’s series against England, has not often been troubled by self-doubt.

‘Who wouldn’t want to be me?’ he asked in his autobiography, Six Machine.

Somewhere, deep down, he may have a point. Gayle has always been a different sort of role model, a man for whom a good innuendo is right up there with a lofted cover-drive.

But his six-hitting is the stuff of legend: in a Twenty20 career spanning 16 franchises in eight countries, he cleared the ropes 786 times, more than anyone.

And his 10,290 runs in the format are more than 2,000 clear of the nearest challenger.

He is, in short, the Pele of 20-over cricket — though, unlike Pele, you suspect Gayle would prefer not to put his face to an advertising campaign for Viagra.

Frankly, he has no need. Even as he approaches his 38th birthday, Gayle retains a box-office presence that the West Indies Test team — thrashed at Edgbaston last week by an innings and 209 runs — so desperately lacks.

Since the news of his one-day recall, first revealed by Sportsmail, was confirmed on Monday, ticket sales for the match at Old Trafford have had a spike.

Gayle is the definitive bums-on-seats cricketer, a man made to connect the sport with the casual fan.

When he calls himself the ‘Universe Boss’ — an upgrade from the more humble ‘World Boss’ — he does so with a twinkle in his eye, but no obvious sense of irony.

‘I give the people what they want,’ he said in a recent interview. ‘There’s no better person to do that than Chris Gayle himself.’

You might imagine, then, that administrators are grateful for that rarest of beasts — a cricketer who transcends the sport and gets fans talking about more than high left elbows and the iniquities of the Decision Review System. But it has not always been thus.

Gayle’s fallout with the West Indies Cricket Board has been well-documented.

They wanted him to commit to domestic cricket in the Caribbean; he wanted to travel the world hitting sixes, gathering dollars, enhancing the brand.

The upshot has been a damaging power struggle, in which Gayle and other rebels — including Kieron Pollard, Dwayne Bravo and Sunil Narine — have paraded their talents with whichever foreign franchise will have them, while West Indies cricket has continued its decline.

Their Twenty20 cricket isn’t the problem. When Carlos Brathwaite hit Ben Stokes for four successive sixes in Kolkata last year, he secured the world title. Earlier in that tournament, Gayle had hit England for an unbeaten 100 from just 48 balls in Mumbai.

But it is the contrast with their Test demise that has caused a proud region so much pain. Gayle, who played the most recent of his 103 Tests in September 2014, insists he is not done with five-day cricket, though a creaking body and a desire to invest in a new generation, suggest otherwise.

It is a body that, if his autobiography is to be believed, has been through a lot, not necessarily all of it on the field. And this is another area where the concept of a role model can fray at the edges.

‘Girls love me,’ he writes. ‘I love the girls. I’m a hot boy… with the girls I’m good — serious good.’

His reputation as a cricketing Casanova is part of the image, and he is happy to admit he lost his virginity to a Guyanese stripper at a go-go bar.

Their Twenty20 cricket isn’t the problem. When Carlos Brathwaite hit Ben Stokes for four successive sixes in Kolkata last year, he secured the world title. Earlier in that tournament, Gayle had hit England for an unbeaten 100 from just 48 balls in Mumbai.

But it is the contrast with their Test demise that has caused a proud region so much pain. Gayle, who played the most recent of his 103 Tests in September 2014, insists he is not done with five-day cricket, though a creaking body and a desire to invest in a new generation, suggest otherwise.

It is a body that, if his autobiography is to be believed, has been through a lot, not necessarily all of it on the field. And this is another area where the concept of a role model can fray at the edges.

‘Girls love me,’ he writes. ‘I love the girls. I’m a hot boy… with the girls, I’m good — serious good.’

His reputation as a cricketing Casanova is part of the image, and he is happy to admit he lost his virginity to a Guyanese stripper at a go-go bar.

At his home in Kingston, he built his own strip bar, complete with lap-dancing pole.

This is all his business, but Gayle was thought to have overstepped the mark in January 2016, when he asked Mel McLaughlin, an Australian TV reporter, out for a drink during a live pitchside interview. ‘Don’t blush, baby,’ he added as if McLaughlin was the one who should have been embarrassed.

Outrage ensued, and he was fined around £5,000 by his team, Melbourne Renegades. But he was unrepentant, arguing his comments had been a ‘simple joke’ and that some of his critics had been motivated by racism.

Gayle, then, comes with a health warning, for the headlines will not all be sweetness and light. But he is, as he admits, ‘complicated’. Beneath the braggadocio is a big heart, one capable of setting up a foundation for disadvantaged children in his native Kingston, Jamaica.

And how West Indies need him right now. If the three-match Test series already feels like a write-off, Gayle’s presence in the white-ball teams will be a shot of adrenaline. An end-of-series one-day series has rarely looked so appetising.

News Courtesy: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sport/cricket/article-4813700/Universe-Boss-Chris-Gayle-save-West-Indies.html.

More Posts

Videos

View All

Facebook Posts

Join our Mailing List

Sign up to receive our email updates

Sale

Unavailable

Sold Out

Rs. 0.00