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World Cup an opportunity for us to turn things around, says Windies veteran Chris Gayle

ICC Cricket World Cup. Photograph:( AFP )

PTI New Delhi, Delhi, India May 16, 2019, 01.46 PM (IST)

Chris Gayle, who heads into his fifth and final World Cup, would love a fairy tale finish and he expects the youngsters to win it for him.

For someone who made his West Indies debut in 1999, Gayle said he never expected himself to have such a long career.

He has played 103 Tests, 289 ODIs and bossing T20 leagues around the world

"Never really considered thinking about it but time does fly quickly. I could never dream of playing so many World Cups but it has happened. It shows consistency in the career. That keeps you going and earn a lot of praise'', Gayle said.

"Hard work in the last couple of has years paid off. People want to see you more and you are trying to deliver as much as possible", he added.

Gayle is also someone who has seen the lowest point of West Indies cricket and his stand-offs with the region's governing body are well-documented.

But the recent Test series win against England at home has raised hopes of a long-awaited revival.

Gayle said, "We have seen changes (in cricket board) in the last couple of months. Hopefully the new team gets it right, gets the structure in place. Cricket is the most important thing for the Caribbean. Hope they take the game to where it is supposed to be.''

"It will take time of course. Lot of things need to be rebuilt. On the field, we had a good series against England, now the World Cup is coming up and that is another opportunity for us to turn things around," added Gayle.

The Jamaican goes into the World Cup in menacing form, having scored 490 runs in the just concluded IPL at 40.83.

"It is a funny game you know. When the World Cup comes, hopefully, the runs would flow. I have a lot of experience so I know what it is like. I am just happy with the way I am batting right now and hope to carry on," Gayle told PTI in an interview.

He may seem superhuman while hitting those massive sixes (he hit 39 of them in the four ODIs against England and 34 in the IPL) but there is a method to that madness. 

Age does catch up, he said, but "if you actually think you can do it, the body will react accordingly".

Story highlights

'Never really considered thinking about it but time does fly quickly. I could never dream of playing so many World Cups but it has happened. It shows consistency in the career. That keeps you going and earn a lot of praise', Gayle said