Chattogram Challengers is hopeful that their West Indies legend Chris Gayle would come up with all guns blazing in a crucial second Qualifier game of the Bangabandhu Bangladesh Premier League (BBPL) in which they would take on Rajshahi Royals.
Knowing that the defeat would ruin their hopes to make the BBPL final, they indeed expected a typical Gayle-storm, which made the Caribbean stalwart famous in the shortest version of the cricket.
Gayle has already played three matches with Chattogram and scored 84 runs, which is not par with his calibre. Particularly what was disappointing was Gayle's strike-rate in those three matches.
Especially in the Eliminator game, he played a huge amount of balls which could have made an adverse impact on the team had captain Mahmudullah Riyad not covered it up later. Gayle played 49 balls to score 38 in that game against Dhaka Platoon. But luckily for Chattogram, their target was not big enough.
Gayle was always a player who consumed deliveries at the start of the innings but later covered it up nicely to keep his strike rate healthy. But recently the problem that haunted him and his team is that before he covered it well, he got dismissed, making things tougher for the team.
But Chattogram still put their faith on Gayle, insisting that he could alone destroy any team if he gets his groove. Moreover, they believe that Gayle's presence is a confidence-booster for them and made the opponents wary about him, regardless of his performance.
"It's a confidence-booster for us that he is playing in our team," Chattogram all-rounder Muktar Ali said. "No one needs to perform if Gayle comes up with his natural game. Such was his impact that he could single-handly drive his side. It's his speciality."
"If Gayle can stand high in tomorrow's game, I think Rajshahi won't win against us. No one can match him," Muktar remarked.
Rajshahi manager Hannan Sarkar, however, admitted the Gayle-factor, proving the point raised by Muktar Ali is right.
"Everyone knows what Gayle can do alone. If he can settle him in the crease, he can destroy any team in any part of the world. So, definitely we have a plan for Gayle. We have to remove him as early as possible if we want to win the game," he said.