West Indies pace bowler Shannon Gabriel insists there is no malice between himself and England captain Joe Root, after a heated exchange between the duo led to a four-match suspension when the teams met in the Caribbean last year.
During the series, Root was picked up on the stump mics responding to an unheard comment from Gabriel. “Don’t use it as an insult,” he said. “There’s nothing wrong with being gay.”
Gabriel was charged the next day for an alleged homophobic remark and did not contest the charges. The footage received widespread attention. The player was charged with a Level Two offence under article 2.13 of the ICC’s Code of Conduct, covering “personal abuse”.
Having recently recovered from injury, Gabriel could be in line to face up with Root again when the teams compete in a three-Test series next month. The bowler has downplayed the incident and has insisted he has long moved past it.
“To be honest that was in the past,” Gabriel said. “I don’t really think about it too much. Whatever happened or whatever was said, I don’t really want to harp on about that, I’m just looking to the future now. I’ve just come here to play good cricket if selected, and do my best for West Indies cricket,” he added.
“I just think the way they dealt with it was blown way out of proportion,” he added. “The story that was told was not entirely true, but I just want to move on and forget that.” (www.sportsmax.tv)