VETERAN Brad Hogg says the Big Bash League must open its arms into a reformed Chris Gayle after a second stunning inning from the West Indian batsman.
Gayle blasted a list 18 sixes on Tuesday night on his way to an unbeaten 146 off 69 balls in the final of the Bangladesh Premier League.
He already holds the record for the greatest innings, 175, at the shortened format of this game, with his latest knock making him the first person to tally 11,000 Twenty20 runs.
But he remains persona non grata in Australia following a pair of controversies.
Gayle famously propositioned a female journalist in a BBL match last January and hadn’t played in Australia since.
The 38-year-old was also dragged via a defamation case, in which he had been acquitted of propositioning himself into a masseuse during a previous tour.
Hogg, whose upbringing in the Melbourne Renegades had not overlapped with Gayle, stated he supported his return into the BBL when his behavior was in check.
“You want the very best players out there. If he is available, I don’t find a reason why he can’t come back,” he said.
“It’s disappointing what’s occurred in previous years. It is up to everybody to pull up their socks and be sure those things do not happen down the track. ”
Comparing Gayle’s behaviour to drunken incidents by English players on tour for the Ashes, Hogg explained “so long as these young players learn from their mistakes and move on and change, from the end of their career they have improved not just as a participant but as a person — that’s what we need”.
After the match, he announced himself “the best batsman of all time”.
Gayle also struck 126 off 51 balls in an elimination final against the Khulna Titans, completing as the contest’s leading run-scorer.