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KFC BBL|05

White happy to welcome Gayle back

19 January 2016

Chris Gayle has made headlines in BBL|05 // Getty Images

Renegades batsman forecasts changes to roster for BBL|06

Melbourne Renegades stand-in captain Cameron White says he'd be "happy" to have Chris Gayle back at the club and expects significant changes next summer.

EXIT: Chris Gayle's Instagram rant

Gayle has been a polarising figure in the KFC Big Bash League this season after his controversial sideline interview with Network TEN Sport reporter Mel McLaughlin saw him receive a $10,000 fine from his club and heavy backlash on social media.

But on Monday night, Gayle's astonishing feats on the field were the main attraction, posting the equal-fastest T20 half-century in the Renegades fruitless chase of the Adelaide Strikers' 171 in 16 overs to qualify for the BBL|05 finals.

Watch: Gayle's 12-ball T20 fifty

Despite the controversy and constant media attention, Gayle was the Renegades' leading run-scorer for the tournament, and White would welcome back the powerful left-hander next season.

"That decision has got nothing to do with me," White said if he'd like to see Gayle back at the club.

"It’s the captain, the coach and the list manager and the management behind the scenes – they work out the list. 

"Throughput the tournament I think he's played well and he's been good company in the dressing rooms, good spirits, so I'd be happy to have him back."

While Gayle's future at the club remains unknown, White expects "a fair few changes" to the playing group next year as they look to return to the finals for the first time since BBL|02.

Quick single:  Gayle equals world record with 12-ball fifty

The Renegades lacked penetration with the ball throughout their BBL campaign, but White says there were issues across the board, particularly their fielding, that were to blame for their fifth-place finish.

"We just had a quick chat then (after the loss to the Strikers) and one of the things Sakes (David Saker, Renegades head coach) pointed out is you've got to come back as better players when we come back next year," White said.

"That's from the No.1 ranked player Finchy (skipper Aaron Finch) down to our rookies and the bottom of our list.

"Everybody's got to come back next year and improve.

"That's the message from the coach – makes good sense to me."

Watch: Gayle fires but Strikers prevail

While White believes the team with the best bowling attack will take out the trophy this summer, it's no secret where his allegiance lies in the finals as the BBL season concludes with two semi-finals in Adelaide and Melbourne and the grand final on Sunday at the venue of the highest-placed winner.

This summer was the 32-year-old's first season in Renegade red after four years with the Melbourne Stars, and his ties with his former club remain strong as they look to break their semi-final hoodoo.

"I miss the Stars," White said. "I hope they play well in the finals. I hope they win.

"Especially for the boys out there, they deserve it, they're a good bunch of blokes."

big bash smash

About the Writer

 @samuelfez
@samuelfez

Sam Ferris is a writer for cricket.com.au. He started in 2011 as a Big Bash League correspondent and continues to monitor the domestic scene and national sides closely.

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