Gayle wary of an Indian backlash in ODI series

Published: Monday, January 15, 2007, 23:53 [IST]
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St John's (Antigua):Chris Gayle is eager to dazzle again in his happy hunting ground India but the explosive West Indies opener warned his side to be prepared for an Indian backlash in the forthcoming four-match ODI series starting in Nagpur on January 21.

Gayle struck the form of his life in the ICC Champions Trophy in India last year and walked away with the Man of the Tournament award. The West Indies also reached the final where Australia pipped them to the post.

But with India smarting from a 4-1 defeat in last year's ODI series in the West Indies and beaten in the rain-marred DLF Cup in Malaysia,Gayle warns, the hosts would come hard at them.

''They are definitely going to come hard at us after we've had the better of them over the last few months and also because they just lost 4-0 in the one-day series in South Africa.

''We are going to have to be ready for them because they are match fit and we have been on a break, so they are all on their games and we are going to have to get ourselves re-acclimatized very quickly,'' Gayle wrote in his column for a website.

''From a personal point of view I am excited to be playing some more cricket out there in India after I was man of the tournament in the Champions Trophy a couple of months back. I have scored a few (four) centuries against them so hopefully I can continue in the same vein on this trip,'' he added.

Gayle believes the series would be an opportunity for the players to confirm their places in the side.

''Everyone is really looking forward to the trip because we all want to make sure we are in that 15-man World Cup squad. The build-up to the big event in the Caribbean has been going on for years so now it's almost here the guys dont want to miss out on getting picked,'' he explained.

Gayle said this would be a good build up for the World Cup as well.

''The World Cup is now less than two months away and the run-in to that tournament starts here. It's World Cup all the way now for us and Im sure for every other team in the competition.

''All our preparation will be geared to the World Cup. We are confident for the tournament, we realise how reaching the final of the Champions Trophy, and also in Malaysia shortly before that, was good for us. Its good to know that we can reach finals and play good cricket against some of the best teams in the world,'' Gayle added.


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