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Pollard backs Gayle to fire at World Cup - All-rounder expects West Indies to progress beyond group stage

Published:Monday | February 9, 2015 | 12:00 AMLeighton Levy
West Indies batsman Chris Gayle does warm-up exercises during the team's training at the Blacktown Field yesterday.

West Indies and Barbados Tridents all-rounder Kieron Pollard says he backs Jamaica's Chris Gayle to lead the West Indies with his bat during the International Cricket Council (ICC) Cricket World Cup that begins this coming weekend.

He also wished the team well as it goes in pursuit of its first World Cup title in 36 years. The last time the West Indies won the ICC World Cup was in 1979. The team returned to the final in 1983 but was upset by India.

Pollard said that despite his absence and that of fellow Trinidadian Dwayne Bravo, there are enough quality players, including Gayle, who can carry the team far.

"There are world-class players; Chris (Gayle) hasn't fired recently, but I back him as the one to go into this World Cup and do well," Pollard said.

"They have a very good chance to get out of the group stage. If they don't get out, then it would be a disappointment, but once you get out from there, it's a lottery - quarter-final, semi-final and then the final - so we will see how they go."


moved on from non-selection


Meanwhile, Pollard said he has moved on from his non-selection to the Windies World Cup squad.

"I am not going to comment on that," Pollard said. "I've had enough time to get over that, and I just want to wish the team all the best and, hopefully, they can do well."

He also gave his blessings to new one-day captain Jason Holder, the man who replaced Bravo as the leader of the team.

"The selectors have made their choice," said Pollard, who was in Jamaica for last Thursday's Caribbean Premier League Draft. "I have spoken to Jason as a senior player. We have had personal discussions, and now he is back with the Tridents, so you can see there is no animosity there, so I hope he can do well."