Windies pin hopes on Gayle force for New Zealand ODIs

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Chris Gayle

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AFP) — The West Indies will hope short-form master Chris Gayle can inspire a misfiring batting line-up in the one-day international series against New Zealand starting on Wednesday.

The tourists meekly surrendered with the bat as they slumped to a 2-0 Test series whitewash against the Black Caps, and need a major improvement in the three ODI games.

Gayle, arriving fresh from a record-breaking stint in the Bangladesh Premier League, promises to inject the aggression and confidence lacking so far during the tour of New Zealand.

He smashed a record 18 sixes in an unbeaten 146 off 69 balls in the BPL final to add to the slew of titles he already holds in the ultra-short form of the game.

Afterwards, the 38-year-old told ESPNCricinfo he was “the greatest batsman of all time”.

His self-assessment may be debatable but New Zealand paceman Lockie Ferguson said the hosts were well aware of the threat the left-hander from Jamaica poses.

Ferguson said Gayle would need time to adjust to local conditions in the opening ODI at Whangarei’s Cobham Oval.

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