Chris Gayle: Somerset sign West Indies batsman for T20

Chris Gayle
Chris Gayle hit 151 not out against Kent in one of his three matches for Somerset last summer

Somerset have re-signed West Indies batsman Chris Gayle for six matches in this summer's T20 Blast competition.

Earlier this month, the 36-year-old was fined £4,900 after asking a TV reporter for a date in a live interview while playing for Melbourne Renegades in Australia's Big Bash League.

He later apologised but said the reaction was "out of proportion".

Gayle, whose first game is on 1 June against Sussex, scored 328 runs in three appearances for Somerset in 2015.

The final match of his six-game stint will be against Hampshire on 19 June.

Gayle said: "I really enjoyed my time at Somerset last year. It's a great club and the supporters were absolutely incredible.

"I'm looking forward to seeing the fans again and to scoring some more runs. Hopefully I can help the club make it through to the later stages."

Somerset's director of cricket Matt Maynard previously described Gayle as "box office" and suggested Somerset sold out their seven T20 Blast games last year "essentially on the back of him signing".

The left-hander hit a 12-ball half-century to equal the record for the fastest fifty in Twenty20 cricket before Renegades exited the Big Bash earlier this month.

Somerset's chief executive Guy Lavender said they may be able to bring Gayle back to Taunton if they qualified from the group stage.

Chris Gayle sixes info

Potential clash with new captain?

Somerset's newly-appointed County Championship skipper Chris Rogers has made it clear he's not the biggest fan of his former Sydney Thunder team-mate Gayle.

Australian batsman Rogers played in the Big Bash League alongside Gayle three years ago.

"From my time at the Thunder I was very disappointed in his attitude and his behaviour," Rogers said on 5 January. "I've never been a fan since.

"He has to realise at some stage, and I'd be the first to admit that at times I've let myself down with my behaviour, but you grow up and you start making better decisions. He needs to start making better decisions."

Rogers has replaced Marcus Trescothick as captain for the four-day competition, after he stepped down from the role last week.

However, Gayle will not play under Rogers directly as Jim Allenby is the club's one-day captain.

'He made a superb impression'

No issues with Gayle - Maynard

Gayle has earned the backing of Maynard despite Rogers' criticism of his time with the Thunder.

The former Glamorgan batsman said the West Indian had got on well with everyone during his time with Somerset last summer.

"He obviously didn't leave a great impression there, but he did here," Maynard told Points West.

"He made a superb impression on the fans, on the players, on the town itself. He was so well thought of and that's what you go on.

"I know there will be no issues between him and Chris Rogers. They are both grown men and they will get on fine."

Gayle's 2016 stint with Somerset

Wednesday, 1 June - Sussex v Somerset

Friday, 3 June - Somerset v Essex

Friday, 10 June - Somerset v Surrey

Wednesday, 15 June - Somerset v Glamorgan

Friday, 17 June - Gloucestershire v Somerset

Sunday, 19 June - Somerset v Hampshire