Hard-hitting West Indies opening batsman Chris Gayle has expressed his delight at being recognised by the University of the West Indies for his contribution to cricket.
The 38-year-old Gayle along with fast-bowler Patrick Patterson, was honoured by the university during a match between a Vice Chancellor’s XI and Bangladesh at Sabina Park on Thursday.
”It is always (great), whenever you get these accolades. You always feel privileged and thankful,” Gayle said.
“The turnout of spectators as well has also been good and it makes you feel as if you have made a contribution to their lives.”
Patterson was unable to attend the presentation ceremony and his award was collected by former West Indies and Jamaica teammate, and now Bangladesh bowling coach, Courtney Walsh.
“The selection of Gayle and Patterson was handpicked by the Vice-Chancellor (Sir Hilary Beckles) himself this year, who has an admiration for the contribution that Patterson has made by his fierce fast bowling, which he believes has dwindled a bit the Caribbean, and is something he would like to revive,” said Dr Akshai Mansingh, Dean of the Faculty of Sports at UWI.
The game, which was enjoying its 19th staging, is held annually against touring Test teams. In 2017 it was presented to veteran West Indies batsman Shivnarine Chanderpaul in St Kitts against touring England.
Other West Indies players who have also been awarded for their contributions include legends Sir Viv Richards, Michael Holding, Gordon Greenidge, Desmond Haynes, Andy Roberts, Curtly Ambrose and Walsh.