Punjab Kings (PBKS) batsman Chris Gayle on Thursday (September 30) pulled out of the remainder of the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021, citing bubble fatigue.
In a statement issued by PBKS, Gayle said staying in a bio-secure environment has taken a toll on him and he wants to refresh before the start of the T20 World Cup later this month.
However, former England skipper Kevin Pietersen feels Gayle’s decision has a lot to do with the Punjab management, who didn’t give the West Indies legend a game on his 42nd birthday last month.
Gayle played two out of the three games for Punjab in the UAE-leg of IPL 2021 and registered scores of 14 and 1 from it.
“He is not being treated right in his environment. He feels like they are using him and getting rid of him, using him and getting rid of him. Didn’t play him on his birthday, cast him aside. If he is not happy, he is 42, let him do what he wants,” Pietersen said on Star Sports.
Overall, Chris Gayle featured in 10 games for PBKS in this IPL season, scoring only 193 runs at an average of 21.44 and a strike rate of 125.32.
While the statistics suggest that he was struggling for runs, Indian batting legend Sunil Gavaskar feels Punjab Kings will miss the southpaw for the remainder of the season.
PBKS need to win all of their next three matches to qualify for the IPL 2021 playoffs.
“A game-changer like Chris Gayle, if he is not in the team, 100 percent it’s a big loss. I think he is in and out of the team. I don’t know what the calculations are.
“Clearly only 4 overseas players can play but sometimes when you see the player who has picked in his place, knowing what he has delivered in the past And sure, he is over 40 and he might not be able to do it at a consistent level that he used to do. But he is a game-changer. 3 overs of Gayle storm and the game is gone from the opposition,” Gavaskar said on Star Sports.