Frustrated Sydney Thunder paceman Dirk Nannes has backed his side to pull out of its Big Bash League nosedive - but only if star import Chris Gayle rediscovers his mojo.
The power hitting West Indian has struggled for runs this campaign, eking out just 20 runs in two innings with a top score of 12.
His strike-rate is an alarming 62.58 - way off the mark of 150 he set when lighting up the inaugural BBL last year.
Gayle reached only eight off 19 without hitting a boundary as the Thunder crashed to their third successive loss against Adelaide Strikers on Thursday.
Nannes, who is in great form with the ball, believes the perennial strugglers can turn the corner against the Hurricanes in Hobart on Sunday if Gayle comes to the party.
"If Chris Gayle bats 10 overs we win the game, pure and simple," Nannes declared.
"He is that important. We need to bowl half decently and group around him as a batting group.
"We've got decent players and if we have a half decent day we'll be okay.
"I don't think all is lost."
But Nannes admitted the BBL easybeats were down on form and confidence.
Apart from himself and Gayle, the side is short on experience and confidence after losing three straight as part of an eight-game losing streak stretching back to last summer.
"There are good kids here but they're a few years away from being good (at this level)," Nannes pointed out.
"I've played with guys who know their game inside out but these guys still don't know their game well enough.
"I'm used to winning but now I'm on the flipside."
The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Cricket Australia
First Posted 22 December, 2012 10:28AM AEST