The West Indies captain, Chris Gayle, is looking forward to signing off his ongoing conflict with England by landing a knockout blow on the host nation today. The two sides know each other closely following six months' worth of bilateral action. England have had the better of the rivalry, winning both the Test and one-day series since returning from the Caribbean. The summer has so far been a testing one for the ice-cool Jamaican, in particular. The pressure of those series brought an admission from him that he was keen to hand in the captaincy.
Now, however, he is relishing the chance to give Paul Collingwood's side some pay-back. "It would be good to come and have the last say on the entire summer against England and beat them," said Gayle. "There are no two ways about it. We are going to have to step up. There is everything to play for, it is a crucial game and we can put ourselves in the semi-finals. "We are looking forward to it and confident we can beat them. We have done it before."
Gayle's free-spirited approach to the game is far better suited to Twenty20, but he admits even this format is not as easy as it looks. He added: "In most forms of cricket there are times when you can let the concentration lapse, but not in this. "You have to always remind each of the players - I need reminding myself - to pay attention all the time. There is a lot of hard-work out there." England v West Indies, ART Prime Sport, 8.30pm