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November 23, 2013
West Indies opener Chris Gayle will miss the remainder of the India ODIs, as well as the upcoming Tests in New Zealand, due to the hamstring injury he picked up in Kochi. He will need three to four weeks to regain full fitness, the West Indies physiotherapist confirmed.
"Chris is returning to the Caribbean for injury management and subsequent physical rehabilitation," CJ Clark, the West Indies physio, said. "He will be assessed continuously over the period with a view for him to be fit for the five ODIs and two Twenty20 Internationals in New Zealand."
West Indies will not send a replacement player for Gayle to India, but Kraigg Brathwaite will take his place in the squad for the New Zealand Tests.
West Indies coach Ottis Gibson said losing Gayle was a major setback for the side as they tried to come back from a 0-1 deficit to win the three-match series against India. "He is our best batsman in this format," Gibson said. "He is one of the senior players in the team and one of the players that know Indian conditions quite well. But I will always try to look at the positive and it gives an opportunity for somebody else to make a name for himself."
Gibson said the team's overall showing in ODIs, recently, was disappointing. "It's frustrating because we sit as a team and we have targets about where we want to be at 10 overs, 20 overs, 30 overs, 40 overs, not only in terms of runs, but also wickets lost," he said. "At every stage, we are way ahead of our targets or on-par with where we want to be [but] we have lost one or two wickets too many.
"In the last 10 overs, it's then left to the bowlers to negotiate and this has been something that has been happening for the last few series we have played and it makes it tough on the team."
West Indies have won only seven of 21 ODIs in 2013, of which three victories have come against Zimbabwe. Going into the must-win game in Visakhapatnam, Gibson said he used the free day on the eve of the match - rain forced practice to be abandoned - to have a word with his players individually. "I have been going around having one-on-one discussions with certain players about certain situations in which they find themselves during matches and discuss how perhaps they can do things better when they find themselves in those situations."
The team, he said, had once again let things slip in Kochi, after being in a decent position. "Judging from the series that India recently played at home against Australia, we know that 211 is not really going to be a competitive total. We had a platform to put 280 on the board. We do not know if that would have been enough, but at least it would have been a decent total, that didn't happen.
"When we bowled, we were able to create some pressure, but we could not sustain for a long enough period and the total we had was not enough. It's frustrating because the guys are working hard and we have what I consider to be solid plans, but we are not executing those plans well enough."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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Plays of the Day from the second ODI between England and India, in Cardiff
Plays of the day from the third ODI between England and India at Trent Bridge
Plays of the day from the tri-series match between Zimbabwe and South Africa
Would he have fared better than the incumbent middle-order batsmen, Root and Ballance?