When we talk about destructive batting, the first name which pops up in our mind is the southpaw from Jamaica – Chris Gayle. He has by far been the most entertaining cricketer in recent times. We have seen how Gayle “storms” away the opposition’s bowling attack. His mammoth sixes leave behind scars on the bowlers.
No matter whom you are playing against, having Chris Gayle on your side will always make you feel better because you know he can turn the tide in your favour. He has been a pivotal figure in each team he has represented, with his national team or during his IPL and Big-Bash ties.
His international career stats indicate why he is one of the greatest ever:
Since he made his entry to International cricket, he has played numerous memorable innings. Let us have a look at 6 instances where Chris Gayle went berserk:
6. West Indies vs England, Barbados 2009 (80 runs from 43 balls)
Chris Gayle’s 80-run innings may not have helped West Indies for a great cause, but the destruction which the English bowling attack suffered was no less a nightmare.He scored 80 runs from 43 balls, which included 5 fours and 8 sixes. He ended with a strike-rate of 186.04.
It was the third ODI of England’s tour of the West Indies. The series was tied one each.
West Indies displayed a superb bowling performance and restricted the English side to a mere 117. Fast bowlers Fidel Edwards and all-rounder Dwayne Bravo took 3 and 4 wickets respectively.
With the help of the Jamaican, West Indies reached their target in the fifteenth over.
5. West Indies vs New Zealand, Wellington 2015 (61 runs from 33 balls)
This inning from Chris Gayle came for a losing cause in the quarter-finals of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015, but still makes it to the list. Chasing a mammoth 394 runs, after Martin Guptill's massive 237-run innings was an uphill task. Yet, Gayle raised some eyebrows in Wellington with his magical spell of batting.
He scored 61 runs from 33 balls which included 2 fours and 8 sixes. If Chris Gayle had managed to continue the run-fest, the match could have been interesting.
Sadly, for West Indies, he was dismissed by Adam Milne for 61, and West Indies were bowled out for 250 runs in 30.3 overs. New Zealand went on to play the semi-finals and were beaten in the final by Australia.
4. West Indies vs South Africa, Johannesburg 2015 (90 runs from 41 balls):
A T20 world record was set when West Indies chased down the highest ever T20 against South Africa in their own backyard.
The Proteas scored a healthy 231 with the help of Faf Du Plessis’ ton, who scored 119 from 56 balls. But when you have Chris Gayle as our opposition, the game is far from over.
Scoring with a strike rate of 219.51, he hit 90 runs from just 41 deliveries. The entertaining performance was accompanied by 9 fours and 7 maximums.
Gayle and Marlon Samuels had put up a 152 run partnership for the second wicket from just 71 balls and guided them to victory a 4 wicket with equal number of balls to spare.
3. West Indies vs England, Mumbai 2016 (100 runs from 48 balls):
The unbeaten century against England during West Indies’ triumph in the World T20 earlier this year was an example how a great player can change the course of a game single-handedly.
Chasing 183 runs in a group match at the World T20 was never an easy task. The southpaw from Jamaica displayed an innings of the highest quality in front of the thousands present at the Wankhede stadium, in Mumbai.
He scored 100 runs with the help of 5 boundaries and 11 maximums. In addition to these facts, he was scoring at a rate of 208.33 bringing up his ton in 48 balls. He took 27 balls to score the first 50 runs and then 21 for the rest half.
2. Melbourne Renegades vs Adelaide Strikers, Melbourne 2016 (56 runs from 17 balls)
The big man took raised the bar of destructive level while representing the Melbourne Renegades in the Australian Big Bash.
He scored 50 runs in 12 balls, scoring the fastest ever half-century in T20 Internationals jointly with Yuvraj Singh. Greg West of Adelaide strikers was punished for 2 runs in an over which included from Gayle.
He ended his innings with 56 runs from 17deliveries. He hit 2 fours and cleared the fence on 7 occasions. His rate of scoring was an unbelievable 329.41. Previously, Yuvraj Singh had scored a half-century of 12 balls during the inaugural ICC World T20, where the southpaw hit six 6’s in an over from Stuart Broad.
The first twelve balls of his innings went like this: 2, 0, 6, 6, 6, 6, 2, 6, 6, 4, 1, 6
1. Royal Challengers Bangalore vs Pune Warriors India, Bangalore 2013 (175 runs from 66 balls)
Scoring 175 runs in a 20 over match is in itself a pretty remarkable feat, and realising that he reached the three figure mark in just 30 balls made it look lethal. The match between Royal Challengers Bangalore and Pune Warriors India was very much a one-way traffic.
Gayle scored a 30-ball century taking the score to a 263, a record in IPL history. He scored a 175 runs and carried his bat throughout. He found the ropes on 13 occasions and hit 17 maximums. He scored runs at a strike rate of 265.15.
Apart from the big man, Bangalore had other power-hitters like A.B. De Villiers, Tilekeratne Dilshan and Virat Kohli, but Gayle’s destructive batting overshadowed everyone. Pune lost the match by 130 runs.