Windies pacer Gabriel extends unreserved apology to Root

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St.Lucia,
Feb 15. West Indies fast bowler Shannon Gabriel, who was handed a
four-match suspension for “inappropriate” comments on England skipper
Joe Root during the third and final Test, has extended an unreserved
apology while revealing his side of the story.

Gabriel who
also attracted a fine of 75 per cent of his match fee and accepted the sanction
without appeal has vowed to learn from the episode.

Sharing his
side of the incident in an ICC statement, Shannon Gabriel, said: “The
pressure was on and England’s captain Joe Root was looking at me intensely as I
prepared to bowl, which may have been the usual psychological strategy with
which all Test cricketers are familiar.”

“I
recognise now that I was attempting to break through my own tension when I said
to Joe Root: ‘Why are you smiling at me? Do you like boys?’

Shannon
Gabriel, said he now feels deeply sorry about his comments.

“To my
teammates and members of the England team, especially their captain Joe Root, I
extend an unreserved apology for a comment, which in the context of
on-the-field rivalry, I assumed was inoffensive picong and sporting banter. I
know now that it was offensive and for that I am deeply sorry,” he said.

“Joe
Root and I have since spoken and I am comforted by the fact that there are no
hard feelings between us,” he added.

Having
already lost the first two Tests and the three-Test series to the No.8-ranked
hosts, World No.2 England eventually had a consolatory win in the final Test by
232 runs and avoided a whitewash.

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