Somerset have refused to rule out legal action against Chris Gayle after the West Indies star backed out of a contract to play for them in this summer’s Twenty20 tournament in order to resume his international career (Somerset 9/2 favourites with bet365 to win the Twenty20).
The big-hitting left-hander signed a deal with Somerset in January, agreeing to represent them in this year’s limited over competition starting next month.
The 32-year-old was available despite his country’s tour of England this summer due to a long-standing dispute with the WICB.
However, Gayle has since patched up his disagreements with West Indies cricket chiefs and has agreed to resume his international career, with the first Test at Lord’s less than three weeks away (England 2/13, draw 13/2, West Indies 12/1 – Test series outright with bet365).
That left Somerset without an overseas player for this summer’s T20 contest, though they have since snapped up South Africa’s Faf du Plessis as a last-minute replacement.
Chief executive Guy Lavender revealed the County were considering their response to Gayle’s about-turn, refusing to rule out the possibility of legal action.
“A contract is a contract and we are exploring our options and will decide what is best for Somerset in due course,” he said.
“We are very disappointed that Chris Gayle will not be joining us for this season’s FLt20, particularly as we have a signed contract and a no-objection certificate from the West Indies Cricket Board.”
In an earlier statement, Gayle said: “I wish to advise that as of today, I have written to Somerset CC and advised them that I will not be honouring the commitment I made to them when I signed a contract with them for the 2012 (Friends Life T20).
“I understand that by making this decision, it may place me in a position of considerable risk, since I am foregoing a signed contract, without any guarantees whatsoever, with only the hope that I will be selected to play for the West Indies again.”