Chris Gayle reveals secret of his success in CT

Published: Tuesday, October 31, 2006, 23:53 [IST]
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Jaipur:In-form West Indies opener Chris Gayle said that adjustment to Indian pitches was the key to his success in the ongoing Champions Trophy.

"The wickets are playing much slower and lower than when I was here last (in 2002). So I try to make adjustments out in the middle. It is working for me," Gayle said ahead of Thursday's semi-final against South Africa.

"There is a lot of difference in my batting now. First, I try to access the wickets as quickly as possible. I am just trying to play straight. When I get a start, I try to capitalise on it and not give it away."

Gayle is the second batsman after Sri Lankan Upul Tharanga to hammer two centuries in the tournament, scoring an unbeaten 104 against Bangladesh in the qualifying round and 101 against England in the last Group-A match.

"The hundred (against England) in the last match was very pleasing. I also got good support from (Dwayne) Bravo in the last game," said the 27-year-old Jamaican.

"I am looking forward to the semi-final and hopefully I can transfer that form to this game as well."

Gayle is also the tournament's second-highest scorer after Tharanga (320 runs) with 304 and has grabbed eight wickets with his tidy off-spin.

"I don't concentrate much on my bowling. I have always paid more attention to my batting. I am a bowler who can come and just get the job done at times."

Gayle said defending champions West Indies had been improving with every match in recent months and the opposition would have to play really good cricket to take the title from them.

"It has been a long tour for us ... from Malaysia to India and then the qualifying games. It has put us in the cricket frame of mind," said Gayle, whose side qualified for the tri-series final in Kuala Lumpur.

"We are playing a lot of cricket and the more cricket we play, the better for us. It has been working so far. We are the defending champions and the teams will have to come hard at us if they want to take it away."

Gayle said his team had to maintain the consistency although they knew the conditions better than South Africa, who would be playing their first game here.

"We have played on this wicket before and know what to expect," said Gayle, who has so far scored 5,406 runs and taken 126 wickets in 149 one-day intetnationals.

"But the South Africans have been really impressive in their last two games. They will be coming really hard at us. We will just have to back ourselves, and go out there and get the job done."

The West Indies opener said he did not believe the defeat against England in the last league match would affect his team's chances.

"It was not a major setback for us," he said.

"Obviously, we wanted to win every match, but (Kevin) Pietersen played a really good innings. We just have to play better in the semi-final against South Africa."

Pietersen smashed an unbeaten 90 as England surpassed the West Indies' total of 272-4 with nine balls to spare, but the West Indies had already qualified for the semi-finals.


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