Chris Gayle is a Jamaican cricketer who plays international cricket for the national cricket team of West Indies. Born and raised in Kingston, Jamaica, he is known as one of the strongest ball-hitters of the modern-day limited-over formats of the game.
He holds several records in both T20 matches and One-Day Internationals (ODIs). Several pundits regard him as the best T20 player of all time. He is generally considered to be fit for the limited-over games, owing to his eccentric and relentless style of playing the game.
However, he also holds several records in Test cricket. In 2012, he became the only player in the world to hit a six off the first ball of a Test match. Apart from being one of only four players to score two triple-centuries in Test cricket, he is also known as one of the few players to score a double-century in a one-day match.
He is also an integral part of the ‘Indian Premier League’ (IPL) team ‘Kings XI Punjab.’ He also plays for several other domestic teams across a number of countries such as Pakistan and Australia.
Chris Gayle was born Christopher Henry Gayle, in Kingston, Jamaica, into a lower middle-class family, on September 21, 1979. He was the fifth of the six children in the family. His parents faced a lot of financial issues while raising their children.
His father, Dudley Gayle, worked as a policeman, while his mother sold peanuts to earn extra money to run the household.
Although his parents had no connection with cricket, Chris’s grandfather was a well-known cricketer. He had played some club cricket back in his younger days. This led Chris to become increasingly attracted toward the game.
Growing up in a huge family and faced with poverty, Chris also worked as a rag-picker for some time during the financial crisis that his family faced. He also once admitted to stealing for some time to support his family.
He was not academically good and focused all his attention on cricket. He graduated from ‘Excelsior High School’ in Jamaica and also joined a local Jamaican cricket club named ‘Lucas Cricket Club.’
Chris claims that his early years with ‘Lucas’ were the transformative years of his life and also believes that those years helped him truly understand the game. He slowly started gaining attention from the selectors by playing in local matches. In 1998, he made his debut for the West Indian youth international team.