West Indies’ hard hitting batsman and former skipper, Chris Gayle, was the main focus of attention during the official launch of Stanbic Twenty20 (T20) series at Harare Sports Club yesterday ahead of the start of the tournament at the same venue tomorrow.
The tournament launch and media briefing was attended by the various team coaches and captains, the overseas professionals, Zimbabwe Cricket and Dominus Sport officials and sponsors.
Besides Gayle, some of the foreign players who attended the function include Australians Shaun Tait (MidWest Rhinos) and Dirk Nannes (Mountaineers), Andrew Hall and Rory Hamilton-Brown (both Mashonaland Eagles).
The plaited-haired West Indies superstar nevertheless easily stood out. Spotting a sky-blue Matabeleland Tuskers T-shirt and some trendy jeans, the gangly legendary batsman, said he was glad to be in Zimbabwe and would give it his all for his team.
He was expected to link up with his new teammates at Tuskers last night after their arrival from Kwekwe where they completed a seven-wicket victory over the touring Kenyan national side.
“I’m looking forward to meeting my new teammates. It’s not my first time here in Zimbabwe and I think it shouldn’t be too hard to get used to each other and hopefully we will do well,” said Gayle who is well known for his stylish and remarkable batting.
“There’s no doubt that with the type of players taking part both local and foreign, it’s going to be an exciting tournament.
“Obviously I have played with and against some of the guys like Shaun Tait in South Africa and Dirk Nannes at Royal Bangalore Challengers.
They are all very good players. Besides the two there are a lot of other good players and everyone wants to get recognised.
“With the spotlight on the tournament it will also be an opportunity for some of the Zimbabwean players to showcase their skills,” said Gayle.
The legendary batter said he was a cricketer who loved to play across the globe and said he took up the opportunity to come and play here as soon as he received the invitation.