Windies peaking at right time says Gayle
COLOMBO – Opening batsman Chris Gayle says West Indies are peaking at the right time as they take on Australia in the second semi-final of the ICC Word Twenty20 on Friday.
The contest will be under lights at the Premasada Stadium, and the reward for victory will be a spot in the grand finale against Sri Lanka on Sunday.
“We are peaking at the right time and we will look to give the people back home something to cheer about,” said the big-hitting batsman.
“Reaching the final will be the number one factor, and from there we will look to cross that final hurdle.”
Gayle says he is ready to perform his heroics on the “big stage” on Friday.
“Playing against Australia, there will always be a lot of hype about the match. You always want to do well against a team like Australia, with all their ‘big’ names and all the really great clashes,” said Gayle.
“It won’t be an easy game for sure, but we will look to put them on the backfoot from early, whether we bowl first or bat first.”
Gayle, who turned 33 at the start of the tournament, is the most destructive power-hitter in the modern game.
Earlier this week, he entered the history books as the first cricketer to hit 300 sixes in Twenty20 cricket.
“We played against Australia in the first round so we know what they have to offer. So it’s a matter that we go out there and play to our strengths, go for the win, try and reach that final and try and win the cup,” said Gayle.
“I am confident. The mind is always key for you to go out there and execute your game plan.”
This is the second time the West Indies have reached the Final Four of the ICC World T20 tournament.
The first occasion was back in 2009 when the event was played in England and Gayle was at the helm.
“I remember it quite well, the semis against Sri Lanka. We played quite well to get there, but we didn’t quite make it to the final,” he recalled.
“We finally get a chance to be here again, this time around in Sri Lanka, so hopefully with a different opponent we can beat them and advance to the final.” (CMC)