Lara, Gayle ready to go again
West Indies cricket greats Brian Lara and Chris Gayle are ready to return to St Elizabeth and participate in the Resi Legends Twenty20 (T20) cricket festival.
Both showcased their talent at the Treasure Beach Sports Complex in St Elizabeth yesterday and were appreciative of the overwhelming support the event received and the atmosphere generated by the more than 5,000 fans who got glimpses of the batting maestros Lara and the 'Universe Boss'.
They rekindled some of their brilliant forms for their respective teams with Gayle XI defeating Lara XI by 11 runs.
"It was great fun out there. It was a no-brainer coming out and supporting (organiser) Daren Powell, and if I had to come out and do it again tomorrow, I would. To see the turnout is just spectacular, and to see and feel the atmosphere with Chris Gayle and guys like Delroy Morgan and Wavell Hinds, who I played with in the past, I am looking forward to coming back," Lara said.
Gayle was also overawed by the support for the match and vowed that he would keep playing if the reception they continue to get is like this.
"It's a great feeling. I haven't seen this crowd in a long time in Jamaica, so that goes to show that people still love cricket, and I know St Elizabeth is the heart of cricket, and big thanks must go out to Lara for taking time out of his busy schedule to take part," Gayle said.
Organiser Powell was also pleased that fans were able to witness some of their past cricket greats turn back the clock, and by all indications, the event could get even more support moving forward.
"I would love to do a cricket clinic a couple of days before the event with some youngsters next year. I still have the youth in my focus," said Powell.
Gayle top-scored for his team with 52 from 37 balls in a total of 156 for six while Lara weighed in with 32 from as many balls in their total of 145 for four in their allotted 20 overs.
Ironically, both Gayle and Lara were dismissed twice, bowled off no balls, but such was the festive nature of the occasion that the fans cheered the umpires' decisions on each occasion.