‘I am the greatest’ - Gayle retiring from ODIs, rates himself as the best cricketer
‘Universe Boss’ Chris Gayle announced yesterday that he will be retiring from One-Day International (ODI) cricket after this year’s World Cup in England and Wales, and the Jamaican has no doubts about his status.
“You’re looking at a great man. I’m the greatest player in the world,” Gayle told reporters ahead of the West Indies’ first of five ODIs against England, which starts on Wednesday in Barbados.
“Of course, I’m still the ‘Universe Boss’. That will never change. I’ll take that to the grave.”
Gayle, 39, has swash-buckled his way to 9,727 runs in 284 ODIs in a career that saw him become one of the most feared batsmen in the world.
Wednesday’s international will be his first since July last year, and the big-hitting veteran is hoping that he can ride off into the ODI sunset with another world title.
“Winning the World Cup would be a fairytale finish. The youngsters owe it to me to win. They have to do that for me and try and get me the trophy. I’ll be looking to put my input in as well,” said Gayle, who needs 677 runs to pass Brian Lara as the West Indies’ all-time top run scorer in ODIs.
The West Indies face England in five ODIs before playing Ireland and Bangladesh in a Tri-Nation ODI series. They will get their World Cup campaign under way against Pakistan on May 31, and Gayle will be hoping to play a major role with the bat and become the region’s most successful run-getter in ODIs.
Gayle notes that he will continue playing T20 cricket and has not ruled out featuring in the T20 World Cup in two years’ time.
“I’m in good condition. The body is feeling good, and I’m pleased with that,” said Gayle. “I’ve lost a bit of weight and I don’t want to get too big. I’m still working on my six pack.
Gayle has 23 ODI centuries to his name – the most by a West Indian.