Bridgetown: West Indies coach Ottis Gibson said that he is staying out of the Chris Gayle dispute and will wait for the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) to sort out the player's availability for the limited overs part of the England tour.
The big-hitting Jamaican left-hander has not played for the West Indies in a year following a spat with the WICB. A Caribbean Community (CARICOM)-brokered deal last month seemed to have healed the rift, but the controversy flared up again last week, putting Gayle's participation in the series in jeopardy.
"The whole Chris Gayle saga has gone on far too long for my liking. I've kinda kept out of it for the last eight months or so and I intend to do so until someone calls me and tells that Chris is available, Gibson said prior to the West Indies' departure for the Test tour of England on Tuesday.
"If Chris is available, then of course he is someone who can add value to our team but I will wait to hear from the board what the situation is." In the CARICOM-brokered deal, spearheaded by St. Vincent and Grenadines Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves, Gayle and the WICB agreed to settle their differences, paving the way for the player's return.
The former West Indies captain ruled himself out of the three-Test series, indicating he wanted to play the full Indian Premier League which ends on May 28. He, however, said he was willing to forego his Twenty20 contract with Somerset County in order to make himself available for the limited overs series
Last week, he was accused by the WICB of "reneging" on his commitment after he wrote the Board asking to clarify his one-day selection so he could sort out his deal with Somerset. Gibson said the remaining IPL-based West Indies players - Kieron Pollard, Dwayne Bravo and Sunil Narine - should be available and would be considered for the limited-overs series in England. They all had played in the last ODI series at home.