England v West Indies, 2nd npower Test, Durham May 13, 2009

Richards and Sobers defend primacy of Test cricket

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Sir Garfield Sobers and Sir Vivian Richards have defended the primacy of Test cricket in the wake of the withering critique launched by Chris Gayle. Richards said Gayle's comments regarding the death of Test cricket were tantamount to a "total betrayal of the game that raised him" and hoped they were not reflective of the West Indian captain's true feelings.

In an interview with The Guardian on Wednesday, Gayle suggested he would not be saddened if Test cricket were to perish at the hands of the Twenty20 format. The West Indian skipper softened his stance slightly in a pre-Test press conference at Chester-le-Street, suggesting his comments were made in reference to his own Test career, which he said was nearing an end.

Richards, though, was not convinced Gayle's statements were truly indicative of his feelings towards Test cricket "based on what he has said before." Still, the former West Indian captain was critical of his latter-day counterpart's statements on the eve of the second Test against England.

"I think individuals should be a little careful with some of the things they say," Richards told Cricinfo. "I believe Chris still loves Test match cricket, and maybe he wouldn't have made these comments if he had been thinking clearly. I honestly feel that this is not what he genuinely believes, and if it is, it is a total betrayal of the game that raised him.

"Everyone has their opinion and Chris has expressed his. I believe that Test cricket is the pinnacle. He must remember that he made the West Indies team not because he was a good Twenty20 player, but because of his ability as a Test cricketer. He seems to have forgotten that the one-day games came out of Test cricket, and it was Test cricket which brought him to the world's attention."

Sobers, perhaps the greatest allrounder the game has known, said he could not relate to the cash-versus-country considerations faced by many of cricket's modern elite, but hoped Test cricket would remain the game's most revered format in the years to come.

"As far as I am concerned, Test cricket is number one," Sobers told Cricinfo. "I have not been in this position. If I was in that situation, I would try to combine both forms of the game of cricket. And if I could not do that, then I would feel that Test cricket would remain the top priority. It would not be an easy decision to make. But I was never in a position like Chris Gayle where I had to choose between something like the IPL and international cricket. I suppose he will make the decision he feels is best for him."

Richards, meanwhile, reiterated the concerns of Clive Lloyd, the former West Indian captain and current chairman of the ICC's cricket committee, regarding Gayle's decision to extend his stint in the IPL and arrive in England just two days before the Lord's Test.

"Chris coming over two days before the Test was obviously his choice, but I was a little bit worried by it," he said. "You need more preparation time than that. That is a long flight and you need time to acclimatise and prepare. It's pretty tough to go all that way and expect to be OK to play straight away."

Alex Brown is deputy editor of Cricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • S.N.Singh on May 20, 2009, 15:54 GMT

    Skipper Gale (WI) is saying this about five days"Test" because he is not a "five days cricketer". He is a natural "Slugger of the ball" as in Base Ball" (USA). In Five Days Cricket where you have a field setting for him, especially in the slip and keeping the ball going to the slip will offends him. 20/20 and one day cricket is more his likeness where the "fielders" are limited is his "soup".

    In five days cricket you could see the ability of a "Real Cricketer".

    S.N.Singh

  • vincygal on May 18, 2009, 13:00 GMT

    as a true cricket lover i will like to see test cricket stay around for a long time.i grew up listening to test cricket with my older brothers and i grew to love it but i also think that everyone has the right to their opinions and if that is the way chris feels then i take my hat off to him for being honest.only you as an individual can know what is best for you and what makes you happy

  • Experienceisoverrated on May 15, 2009, 5:57 GMT

    People need to face reality. test cricket is dying and hopefully it will be dead soon. People don't have patience for it nowadays. In the old days when there might not have been anything else to do, people would sit and watch 1 game that could take up to 5 days and not provide a result. Now, most people have plenty of other options to entertain themselves.

    Secondly, why is everyone criticizing Gayle? He only said what is sensible. If someone came to me and told me that instead of working hard for 5 days a week, I could work for a few hours for a couple days and make a lot more money and be exposed to a lot more fans, I would absolutely take that and so would everyone else. Its hypocritical to criticize Gayle here.

    Hopefully before too long this boring format will be dead and make way for the formats that people and players alike actually enjoy.

  • Voges on May 15, 2009, 2:58 GMT

    It's a storm in a teacup. People are entitled to their opinions and, looking closely at his comments, it does appear as though he was referring to himself rather than the game in general.

    Frankly though, there are enough people interested in each of the different forms of the game to guarantee success for at least another generation. I'm a traditionalist - is there anything better than a five-day match which still has all three results as an option in the final hour of the final session? And I accept that to get good games, you need to endure bad ones. But that's the same in all forms: a team winning an ODI by 170 runs, or 20/20 matches won by nine wickets are just as disappointing.

    Let everyone enjoy the forms they love - no-one is forcing anyone to watch anything they don't want to.

  • anmol4india on May 14, 2009, 21:35 GMT

    Frankly speaking, i dont have any problem with what Gayle told, neither should one have any. He, besides being a captain, is also a human being and he should have his ways of seeing things. But still being the captain he should have limited the length of his tongue and he should have a control on whatever he said. But i thìnk those as idiots who tell that Gayle should step down or rather criticise him. They should let him concentrate on his game and captaincy. And players and captains like him are not born everyday and he is the one who leads from the front and his leadership is something the struggling windies need to get back to what they were in the 70s and 80s. This is my view

    Anmol Mohta India

  • HPeagle50 on May 14, 2009, 21:08 GMT

    Losing matches repetitively will drag anyone down & gayle isnt different from anyone else. The WI team of today isnt what it was during its glory days so people should understand how gayle feels. Test cricket wont die but will be decreased to probably 3 matches max per series later on.

  • ttyX on May 14, 2009, 18:58 GMT

    Test Matches are here to stay and it's something we all should understand coz they're the ultimate test for any team

  • kingofspain on May 14, 2009, 18:23 GMT

    Test cricket is real cricket. It's the format loyal cricket supporters want to see most. The 20/20 bubble has burst and, in fact, it is that form of the game that will suffer from decline. 20/20 lacks the loyal hardcore base of support that any sport needs. The casual fans who prefer 20/20 will move onto something else once the novelty has worn off (which it already has, to a large extent).

  • mmoosa on May 14, 2009, 17:31 GMT

    Cricket wont survive if club and first class cricket continue to weaken due to the overcrowded International cricket calendar. Surely the prospect of youngsters earning lucrative contracts via a memdium like the IPL or similar will entice more youngsters into the game. The idea of having a potentially lucrative career at non international level surely gives cricket a chance of widening its talent net and pool of players. Most domestic cricket used to be semi-professional in the past(apart from England)and cricketers used to work full time jobs to make ends meet.No employer will allow this luxury anymore meaning that very few cricketers will make a meaningful living from the game in the long term. The frenetic pace of modern lifestyles,entertainment choice,competing sports,etc has damaged West Indies cricket-can cricket afford other major powers to similarly recede?

  • _Australian_ on May 14, 2009, 16:51 GMT

    The people who are posting here that test cricket should end really do not understand the game or clearly don't play it. Lets imagine Test cricket was to stop being played tomorrow. What kid born today would want grow up to be a bowler? This alone would ruin cricket. As I have said before in this post if Test cricket is apparently dying according to several posts, how is it I can't purchase a ticket to the upcoming Ashes Test series but I can purchase tickets to any World T20 game which is being played before the Ashes. There is room for all three styles of the game and all it takes is some common sense from the ICC etc. to sort out an itinerary for the entire year.

  • S.N.Singh on May 20, 2009, 15:54 GMT

    Skipper Gale (WI) is saying this about five days"Test" because he is not a "five days cricketer". He is a natural "Slugger of the ball" as in Base Ball" (USA). In Five Days Cricket where you have a field setting for him, especially in the slip and keeping the ball going to the slip will offends him. 20/20 and one day cricket is more his likeness where the "fielders" are limited is his "soup".

    In five days cricket you could see the ability of a "Real Cricketer".

    S.N.Singh

  • vincygal on May 18, 2009, 13:00 GMT

    as a true cricket lover i will like to see test cricket stay around for a long time.i grew up listening to test cricket with my older brothers and i grew to love it but i also think that everyone has the right to their opinions and if that is the way chris feels then i take my hat off to him for being honest.only you as an individual can know what is best for you and what makes you happy

  • Experienceisoverrated on May 15, 2009, 5:57 GMT

    People need to face reality. test cricket is dying and hopefully it will be dead soon. People don't have patience for it nowadays. In the old days when there might not have been anything else to do, people would sit and watch 1 game that could take up to 5 days and not provide a result. Now, most people have plenty of other options to entertain themselves.

    Secondly, why is everyone criticizing Gayle? He only said what is sensible. If someone came to me and told me that instead of working hard for 5 days a week, I could work for a few hours for a couple days and make a lot more money and be exposed to a lot more fans, I would absolutely take that and so would everyone else. Its hypocritical to criticize Gayle here.

    Hopefully before too long this boring format will be dead and make way for the formats that people and players alike actually enjoy.

  • Voges on May 15, 2009, 2:58 GMT

    It's a storm in a teacup. People are entitled to their opinions and, looking closely at his comments, it does appear as though he was referring to himself rather than the game in general.

    Frankly though, there are enough people interested in each of the different forms of the game to guarantee success for at least another generation. I'm a traditionalist - is there anything better than a five-day match which still has all three results as an option in the final hour of the final session? And I accept that to get good games, you need to endure bad ones. But that's the same in all forms: a team winning an ODI by 170 runs, or 20/20 matches won by nine wickets are just as disappointing.

    Let everyone enjoy the forms they love - no-one is forcing anyone to watch anything they don't want to.

  • anmol4india on May 14, 2009, 21:35 GMT

    Frankly speaking, i dont have any problem with what Gayle told, neither should one have any. He, besides being a captain, is also a human being and he should have his ways of seeing things. But still being the captain he should have limited the length of his tongue and he should have a control on whatever he said. But i thìnk those as idiots who tell that Gayle should step down or rather criticise him. They should let him concentrate on his game and captaincy. And players and captains like him are not born everyday and he is the one who leads from the front and his leadership is something the struggling windies need to get back to what they were in the 70s and 80s. This is my view

    Anmol Mohta India

  • HPeagle50 on May 14, 2009, 21:08 GMT

    Losing matches repetitively will drag anyone down & gayle isnt different from anyone else. The WI team of today isnt what it was during its glory days so people should understand how gayle feels. Test cricket wont die but will be decreased to probably 3 matches max per series later on.

  • ttyX on May 14, 2009, 18:58 GMT

    Test Matches are here to stay and it's something we all should understand coz they're the ultimate test for any team

  • kingofspain on May 14, 2009, 18:23 GMT

    Test cricket is real cricket. It's the format loyal cricket supporters want to see most. The 20/20 bubble has burst and, in fact, it is that form of the game that will suffer from decline. 20/20 lacks the loyal hardcore base of support that any sport needs. The casual fans who prefer 20/20 will move onto something else once the novelty has worn off (which it already has, to a large extent).

  • mmoosa on May 14, 2009, 17:31 GMT

    Cricket wont survive if club and first class cricket continue to weaken due to the overcrowded International cricket calendar. Surely the prospect of youngsters earning lucrative contracts via a memdium like the IPL or similar will entice more youngsters into the game. The idea of having a potentially lucrative career at non international level surely gives cricket a chance of widening its talent net and pool of players. Most domestic cricket used to be semi-professional in the past(apart from England)and cricketers used to work full time jobs to make ends meet.No employer will allow this luxury anymore meaning that very few cricketers will make a meaningful living from the game in the long term. The frenetic pace of modern lifestyles,entertainment choice,competing sports,etc has damaged West Indies cricket-can cricket afford other major powers to similarly recede?

  • _Australian_ on May 14, 2009, 16:51 GMT

    The people who are posting here that test cricket should end really do not understand the game or clearly don't play it. Lets imagine Test cricket was to stop being played tomorrow. What kid born today would want grow up to be a bowler? This alone would ruin cricket. As I have said before in this post if Test cricket is apparently dying according to several posts, how is it I can't purchase a ticket to the upcoming Ashes Test series but I can purchase tickets to any World T20 game which is being played before the Ashes. There is room for all three styles of the game and all it takes is some common sense from the ICC etc. to sort out an itinerary for the entire year.

  • faakir on May 14, 2009, 16:04 GMT

    what gayle said is actually a fact at the moment which is frightening to a true cricket lover.Players are taking a likening to T20 because its short and has a lot of money.Who would like to travel and play round the year when you can earn more in just a few weeks.T20 most of the times doesn't need much technique from the batsmen and if batsmen are looking to play like that only they would not last one session in test cricket.As far I'm concerned I personally like to see the tussle between the bat and the ball in test matches.Who can forget great battles like Warne vs Tendulkar or Mcgrath vs Lara.I would love to see more such rivalries.

  • hazeltine on May 14, 2009, 15:56 GMT

    I do not have a problem with Gayle's comments regarding what form of cricket is better, but i totally disagree with him saying them on the eve of a Test match. He should have been concentrating on his team who had dropped six catches, bowled poorly, and batted feebly. If Gayle does not want to be captain, he should be stripped of it immediately and should he get in a huff about that, then Dyson should send him home. Gayle knew he could fire off the comments in the way he has because the leadership in WIndies cricket is pathetic and no action will be taken against him. by the way if the weather holds up at Durham, we will lose that Test as well.

  • DURMOTHJ on May 14, 2009, 14:14 GMT

    The sentiments echoed by the two former captains of the West Indies cricket team Clive Lloyd and Sir Vivian Richards are quite timely and it demonstrates how much these guys understand the psychology of the game. However, I don't think that they should be too surprised when these types of incidents occur. What we're witnessing here is a direct corelation betwwen the attitude demonstrated by Chris Gayle and the deterioration of the cricket culture which we have enjoyed and loved over the many decades in the Caribbean. There is plenty of blame to go around but I find that too often we're being reactionary instead of being proactive in pointing out the areas of our deficiencies. We must be prepared to make the tough decisions in order to regain the sense of pride if we're serious about maintaining the culture.

  • Betting on May 14, 2009, 13:23 GMT

    People are obviously divided on this issue and it's going to be pretty hot. But if Chris really thinks he couldn't care less if Test cricket died, then he should resign from his position with the team. If he really couldn't care less, then can he truly be trusted to play his best in this and subsequent series? If he doesn't care about it, why is he playing something he doesn't believe in? I'm bewildered by his attitude.

    He's taken money from his board and so he should be giving it his best. It's got nothing to do with countries from certain countries earning more. It's about a person saying that one format of the game is dying but he's prepared to milk it for all it's worth. Employers and their employees negotiate their contracts and regardless how much they are worth, employers (and their fans who contribute the money for the contracts) should expect the best from their employees. If he truly think it is dying he should leave and play Twenty20 only.

  • bear007 on May 14, 2009, 11:58 GMT

    when Brian Lara was captain he was under a lot of pressure. He had it on the field and off... but he handled it like a real man,with dignity, respect just look at his mannerism...no wonder he's admired worldwide and respected by other great cricketers. Gayle however, sounds like an infant. He thought it was a walk in the park...sorry if you cant handle a man's job get the hell out...

  • Gharo on May 14, 2009, 10:54 GMT

    Gayle failed in IPL an yet he thinks he likes.the fact remains dat 20/20 doesnt want him lokn at his performance mybe ODIs whr he plays better.The reason why gayle played cricket was so dat he can play test cricket now dat there is 20/20 he thinks its the reason why he plays cricket. WICB should drop gayle from international duties we dnt want a role model like dat an let him play 20/20

  • ajju.cool on May 14, 2009, 10:50 GMT

    continued..

    The test loving generation ends with Sachin, Jayawardene & Ponting. then it's the youngsters to follow.We Dont want to sit in front of the TV for 5 days to see the results of a match.we dont want to go to the stadium for 5 continuous days.

    y is football so popular? coz the game ends in 90 mins. That's what we want. a game that entertains us in the least possible time. 180 mins for a 20-20 match is just the perfect recipe when it comes to entertainment in cricket.

    We dont want to watch a 5 day cricket n see sumone score 100 in 200 balls at a strike rate of 50. what we wont is to see is a 100 score in 50 or 60 balls at a strike rate of over 150.

    plus the moto of playing cricket is not to keep the game alive. the moto of playing cricket is to entertain the crowd and the players.

    Finally,I want to ask one question to all the cricket fans in the world. if you were to travel from India to UK. will you ride a camel? a horse? or just take a flight.

    there you have your answer.

  • ajju.cool on May 14, 2009, 10:40 GMT

    I don't blame Chris Gayle's at all. I'm with him on this. wake up people. Its a well knows fact that Test Cricket is Dying. It's no more than a burden. Player's don't play test cricket coz they love it. they play test cricket coz they are forced to it. and then they have to put on the mask of loving test cricke.

    No doubt ODI's n 20-20's came from test cricket. its the base of all forms of cricket. But that doesnt mean you carry test cricket on your shoulder's all the time. Test Cricket is a legend, let it be a legend. Do not drag it n insult it this way. its time for test cricket to retire itself. make way for the younger versions.

    If there are 100 cricket fans. i can guarantee that majority of them follows 20-20 religiously. may be 75% of them even follow ODI's. but only a few of them follow Test Cricket. most of them just switch on the channel to see the score.

    to be continued.....

  • sap1979 on May 14, 2009, 9:23 GMT

    Partyman who at the first place asked andrew strauss to make comments on Gayle. Chris is right that its none of andrew's business. Besides as andrew says test cricket is about skills, we all saw how good his skills were in the ashes in Australia in 2006-2007. Do you remember the scorecard of that series? Ashes should be reduced to a 3 test series anyway. All it does is give australia a free pass to increase their rating points in the ICC rankings.

  • liam_white on May 14, 2009, 9:17 GMT

    aditya.pidaparthy The IPL contracts where agreed a long time ago, but the IPL was to be hosted in Indian and at a completely different date! So this poin is irrelavent.

    He is his Countries Captin, if he doesn't like test cricket he should not play it and step down as captian, then he is free to play all the IPL he likes.

  • magic_torch_jamie on May 14, 2009, 9:10 GMT

    The problem here is pretty deep. If people really are concerned about who hit how many sixes - and there's not much other appeal in Twenty20 - rather than the evolution of a match and little duels within it, the game could collapse. It looks like the appeal of Twenty20 is already levelling out: where does it have to go? But the issue of where the money goes is crucial. If proper cricket could tap into such riches there would be no crisis...

  • jamrith on May 14, 2009, 8:54 GMT

    Much as I prefer the longer version of the game, I can understand where Gayle is coming from. However, his performance in IPL 2009 was less than stellar, and he may find himself out in the cold anyway. And Myth_Buster your comments are as crass as Lalit Modi's smile, go figger !!

  • Vinshada on May 14, 2009, 8:38 GMT

    I don't think Viv Richards is in any position to air his views the Test vs T20. This is a man who was wholeheartedly behind the Stanford circus and on the 'legends' board etc supporting Stanford. The very same Stanford who belittled test cricket.

    I am more disappointed by what's become of Viv Richards than Gayle's off the cuff remarks. Viv, you were my hero, please go live quietly and don't ruin my admiration for you.

  • prashnottz on May 14, 2009, 8:38 GMT

    I think people are going overboard by comments like "Country brings you to the world stage big time and you are preferring money over country. This is totally uncalled for especially from the leader of team like WI. People like him don't deserve to be in the team.".

    For starters, West Indies comprise a league of nations in the Carribean and is not a country. Secondly, every individual in this world has the right to choose his career, and make money. I wonder Kaiser1, being offered a plush job in a developed country, would say no to it and stay in his own country. Double standards and hypocrisy at it's best.

    Kudos to Gayle for speaking out what 90% of the players today wanted, but did not have the courage to. Test cricket, though the best format of the game, is on an inevitable decline. As long as efforts are not taken to revive spectator interest in it, which is the lifeblood of any sport, it will surely die a slow but sure death. No point flogging a dead horse beyond the limit.

  • S.h.a.d.a.b on May 14, 2009, 8:37 GMT

    Gayle does not need to compare test cricket with T20. test cricket is the spiritual part of the game and T20 is cash making format. T20 was developed to attract those youngsters who were not following the game like their previous generations. it was not an issue in sub continent. it was issue in England or West Indies. Gayle's comments truely reflect this issue. Richards is still favouring Test and Gayle prefers T20.

  • burnout on May 14, 2009, 7:46 GMT

    Chris Gayle is entitled to his own opinion regarding test cricket, i dont see why everyone else is so offended and trying to defend test cricket when in the end it is the players who are playing the game, not us. If he has decided he wants to earn more money by playing T20 then that is his decision.

  • cook on May 14, 2009, 7:28 GMT

    Test cricket will be here to stay. Most true cricket followers remember or know about the tied tests, or the Steve waugh 200 in the West Indies and the list goes on...but how many remember a tied 20/20 match ? I know there is no such thing, because of a bowl off or a super over or whatever they call it now. But can anyone remember some outstanding bowling/batting performance in 20/20 ? People remember outstanding performances in Test cricket. I don't even know who is currently leading the IPL. Does anyone apart from South Africans and Indians know without having to look it up ?

  • slugger1969 on May 14, 2009, 6:37 GMT

    Hey myth_buster. Test cricket a fad? Since 1877 mate. Survived 2 world wars, apartheid, political instability, the Packer revolution and the advent of one-dayers. T20 is a fad. It is not a true test of skills and anyone who thinks it is obviously hasn't played the game. Test cricket will survive. Kids want to grow up and play for their country, play at Lord's, not grow up and have a slog for the Delhi Daredevils.

  • Lucky K on May 14, 2009, 6:34 GMT

    Viv Richards' comments don't make sense 'total betrayal of the game that raised him'?

    Why do people think players owe Test cricket anything? Test Cricket is not a living breathing being. Its a concept, an abstract. If anything, Test cricket owes a lot to the players that have allowed the concept to exist. Test cricket reminds me a lot of inefficient beaurocracy. I wish I got paid for working just 5 days at a time, half of the time spent sitting on my arse watching a couple of my colleagues sweat it out in the middle.

    Anyway, Viv Richards, three words - World Series Cricket.

    You are no saint yourself, abandoning Test cricket to chase after the almighty dollar in your own time.

  • _Australian_ on May 14, 2009, 6:22 GMT

    This so called Test cricket is dead due to lack of support from crowds is a myth I can bust for you myth_buster May 13 18:45. If test cricket is in so much trouble how is it that I could not get tickets to any test match of the up coming Ashes series. It is also very difficult to get tickets back home in Australia also. Perhaps some countries are having difficulty in getting bums on seats but an Ashes series never has this problem. So as long as we have the Ashes then we will have Test cricket and there is a huge market for Ashes cricket. I think there will be a few more than 5 security men and a dog watching this year.

  • vsrajan on May 14, 2009, 5:49 GMT

    Where is the question of IPL vs Country? Gayle never said that he would be playing only in IPL. He simply said that Test cricket will make way for T20. And it is surprising to note that Sobers, the greatest allrounder, is comparing IPL with countries. IPL is one of the tournaments like European league in Soccer. That doesnt mean that players should not represent their respective countries. Gayle's view is his personal view and opinion which definitely does not reflect WI team's opinion. Why make such a big hue and cry? Let him give his views and if WICB feels he should not be the captain, let them take action. I fully agree with Kalyanbk, why compare formats. Let those who love to watch Test cricket be its fans and people who like T20 go and enjoy the same. Dont bring in criticism into something which is entertainment and pass time.

  • Higherz on May 14, 2009, 4:56 GMT

    Myth_buster - what planet do you live in? Have you seen a boxing day test or sydney or gabba or ashes or aust v india?

  • Ozcricketwriter on May 14, 2009, 4:41 GMT

    Well, congratulations West Indies cricket. You now have a headline. This non-story about Chris Gayle's personal opinion, which he should be free to make without repercussions is being turned into something major, when it really shouldn't. Why can't a player say how they feel and be honest about it? Stop! Thought police! Let us hope that the next West Indian cricket headline is about cricket, not about thoughts.

  • TheDoctor394 on May 14, 2009, 3:04 GMT

    Myth Buster says "fads like Test cricket..." Test cricket has been around for over one hundred years. That's a fad?

  • rohanbala on May 14, 2009, 1:18 GMT

    The West Indies selectors should seriously consider replacing their Team captain immediately. Why should they select a captain whose heart lies elsewhere?

  • ian1wason on May 13, 2009, 20:45 GMT

    i hope that gayle remains a test player as well as skipper. He and the team has improved since his reign. It will be a very big blow if he leaves.

  • kaiser1 on May 13, 2009, 20:21 GMT

    This is something that T20 has brought with it that players are becoming so selfish that they choosing between money and country. Country brings you to the world stage big time and you are preferring money over country. This is totally uncalled for especially from the leader of team like WI. People like him don't deserve to be in the team. Tests are soul and essence of the game. The respect of the game is a must which gives one name money and fame together with celebrity status. I love test cricket.

  • tomjs100 on May 13, 2009, 19:43 GMT

    Gayle turning up 2 days before a test series is breathtakingly arrogant as are his comments on captaincy, which he can't be bothered to do, or test cricket which he can't be bothered to do. Somebody sack him please.

  • HundredPercentBarcelonista on May 13, 2009, 19:37 GMT

    So the WICB arranges ad-hoc series to make some money while it hasn't paid the players for their services. Brilliant. And then we hear cricketing greats like Sir Vivian and Sir Gary talk about preserving test cricket while giving no mind to the players' right to earn to their fullest potential.

  • aditya.pidaparthy on May 13, 2009, 19:04 GMT

    One point which most people seem to be clearly forgetting in all this brouhaha over how right Gayle was in putting T20 over test cricket, is that most of the IPL contracts were written a long time ago and so was the schedule. The West indies tour of England was not even part of the future tour program and was arranged at very much the last moment without any input from the players quite a few of whom were taken unawares. At least in the current case I feel Gayle's position of arriving late for the test and trying to play as much in the IPL is somewhat justified as he had committed to the contracts long before the tour was even thought of, and hey a man's got to earn and eat.

    That said, I hope Gayle doesn't quit test cricket. Won't be fun watching Windies matches.

  • myth_buster on May 13, 2009, 18:45 GMT

    Who cares about what these guys have to say?. They really don't matter. It is the force of the market / invisible hand that is bigger than anything else. Test Cricket can't think it is bigger than the force. The primacy of a caveman hitting a stone with a club has been there for millions of years. Fads like Test cricket will come & go. Right now, it is bye bye test cricket. Any sport which has five security men & a dog as spectators should die immediately

  • Partyman on May 13, 2009, 18:09 GMT

    Quote "Richards, though, was not convinced Gayle's statements were truly indicative of his feelings towards Test cricket "based on what he has said before." Unquote. What is Sir Viv trying to say? If he is trying to imply that Chris Gayle would not have meant what he said, he needs to wake up. The whole interview of Chris Gayle was full of spiteful comments about everything under the sun starting from Andrew Strauss to the Captaincy of West Indies. The man Chris Gayle is a clown and deserves no respect from anyone. Though lot of pundits hail him as a good captain, he has not shown any signs of a leader in his two years of leadership. His reaction, rather lack of it, during the fiasco in the first ODI said everything about his leadership qualities. Oh yes given his record in this year's IPL, someone needs to remind him that he is crap at it too. What a joker!

  • kalyanbk on May 13, 2009, 17:48 GMT

    Why do people have to defend test cricket? Why does Gayle have to defend his preferences regarding his career? Let those who love test cricket play test cricket. Let those who love T20 play T20. Why compare the formats?

  • Divinetouch on May 13, 2009, 17:15 GMT

    For the good of West Indian Cricket, Chris Gayle should be left out of the team for the second test against England starting tomorrow May 14, 2009 in Durham.

    Should we lose let i be with players who are focused on test cricket and should we win we would be satisfied to know that the fellas played for the West Indies.

    Further, the selectors should decide whether there is a place for him in the shorter versions of the game depending on his commitment to the team

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  • Divinetouch on May 13, 2009, 17:15 GMT

    For the good of West Indian Cricket, Chris Gayle should be left out of the team for the second test against England starting tomorrow May 14, 2009 in Durham.

    Should we lose let i be with players who are focused on test cricket and should we win we would be satisfied to know that the fellas played for the West Indies.

    Further, the selectors should decide whether there is a place for him in the shorter versions of the game depending on his commitment to the team

  • kalyanbk on May 13, 2009, 17:48 GMT

    Why do people have to defend test cricket? Why does Gayle have to defend his preferences regarding his career? Let those who love test cricket play test cricket. Let those who love T20 play T20. Why compare the formats?

  • Partyman on May 13, 2009, 18:09 GMT

    Quote "Richards, though, was not convinced Gayle's statements were truly indicative of his feelings towards Test cricket "based on what he has said before." Unquote. What is Sir Viv trying to say? If he is trying to imply that Chris Gayle would not have meant what he said, he needs to wake up. The whole interview of Chris Gayle was full of spiteful comments about everything under the sun starting from Andrew Strauss to the Captaincy of West Indies. The man Chris Gayle is a clown and deserves no respect from anyone. Though lot of pundits hail him as a good captain, he has not shown any signs of a leader in his two years of leadership. His reaction, rather lack of it, during the fiasco in the first ODI said everything about his leadership qualities. Oh yes given his record in this year's IPL, someone needs to remind him that he is crap at it too. What a joker!

  • myth_buster on May 13, 2009, 18:45 GMT

    Who cares about what these guys have to say?. They really don't matter. It is the force of the market / invisible hand that is bigger than anything else. Test Cricket can't think it is bigger than the force. The primacy of a caveman hitting a stone with a club has been there for millions of years. Fads like Test cricket will come & go. Right now, it is bye bye test cricket. Any sport which has five security men & a dog as spectators should die immediately

  • aditya.pidaparthy on May 13, 2009, 19:04 GMT

    One point which most people seem to be clearly forgetting in all this brouhaha over how right Gayle was in putting T20 over test cricket, is that most of the IPL contracts were written a long time ago and so was the schedule. The West indies tour of England was not even part of the future tour program and was arranged at very much the last moment without any input from the players quite a few of whom were taken unawares. At least in the current case I feel Gayle's position of arriving late for the test and trying to play as much in the IPL is somewhat justified as he had committed to the contracts long before the tour was even thought of, and hey a man's got to earn and eat.

    That said, I hope Gayle doesn't quit test cricket. Won't be fun watching Windies matches.

  • HundredPercentBarcelonista on May 13, 2009, 19:37 GMT

    So the WICB arranges ad-hoc series to make some money while it hasn't paid the players for their services. Brilliant. And then we hear cricketing greats like Sir Vivian and Sir Gary talk about preserving test cricket while giving no mind to the players' right to earn to their fullest potential.

  • tomjs100 on May 13, 2009, 19:43 GMT

    Gayle turning up 2 days before a test series is breathtakingly arrogant as are his comments on captaincy, which he can't be bothered to do, or test cricket which he can't be bothered to do. Somebody sack him please.

  • kaiser1 on May 13, 2009, 20:21 GMT

    This is something that T20 has brought with it that players are becoming so selfish that they choosing between money and country. Country brings you to the world stage big time and you are preferring money over country. This is totally uncalled for especially from the leader of team like WI. People like him don't deserve to be in the team. Tests are soul and essence of the game. The respect of the game is a must which gives one name money and fame together with celebrity status. I love test cricket.

  • ian1wason on May 13, 2009, 20:45 GMT

    i hope that gayle remains a test player as well as skipper. He and the team has improved since his reign. It will be a very big blow if he leaves.

  • rohanbala on May 14, 2009, 1:18 GMT

    The West Indies selectors should seriously consider replacing their Team captain immediately. Why should they select a captain whose heart lies elsewhere?