West Indian captain thrilled after series win July 8, 2007

'I'm just a back-up captain' - Gayle

Cricinfo staff



Chris Gayle tasted success in his first series as captain of West Indies © Getty Images

A delighted Chris Gayle brushed off suggestions that he could permanently take over as West Indies captain following the 2-1 ODI series win over England.

"I am just the back-up captain right now and whenever he [Ramnaresh Sarwan] comes back he will get the same support from the guys. Because we have won the series a lot of people might be saying that Chris should continue as captain but I think Sarwan really deserves his chance. It was unfortunate that he got injured."

Gayle also said that it was a tremendous experience for him to lead the team. Talking about the series win, Gayle said, "I am very very happy. I have to give thanks to the guys for the support.

"I thought it was a tremendous effort. It means a lot to me, not only because I am the captain; even if I was a player under [Ramnaresh] Sarwan's captaincy it still would have meant a lot to me. You have to give credit to everyone. It's all about the momentum. The vibes on the field was so good and you are just happy and enjoying the moment."

Gayle also mentioned the work that went on behind the scenes. "We did a lot of planning and all the guys communicate well with each other. We have a lot of team meetings and we know what responsibility each guy has. All the guys deserve it.".

Gayle, whose appointment as captain by the selectors was initially rejected by the West Indies cricket board, commended the effort of his team-mates. "To be one-nil down and come from behind to win 2-1 it was tremendous and we have to give credit to everyone, everyone had an input in winning this series.

"I thought the players were outstanding, not just one individual. Man-of-the-Series Shiv (Chanderpaul) was tremendous for us with the bat. Daren Powell, Ravi Rampaul and Fidel Edwards always gave us a good start and I have to give those guys credit. Everybody chipped in, everybody played a part and we were well backed up in the field as well so I recommend that these guys really deserve to take a rest."

The West Indian captain played an uncharacteristically slow innings on Saturday. "We lost a couple of wickets and I decided that I wasn't going to take any chance at all. I was just going to play according to the situation and eventually it worked for me in the end with a few chances. As a professional you should be able to adapt to situations and be able to adjust as well.

"In the end it paid off for us with [Runako] Morton and [Dwayne] Bravo playing a big part in the innings. It is important to keep wickets in hand. Once you have wickets in hand it can always be a slog in the end."

Gayle took a guarded stance when asked about the relaxation of the 11.30 curfew.

"We are driving to London right now and we need to take a rest, we are going to Gatwick to get a flight tomorrow to Ireland and another tour starts again. We might have a bit of celebrations on the bus, the guys deserve to take a rest but we have to not lose focus, we have three games more to go [in Ireland]."