Proteas don’t scare Gayle

West Indies captain Chris Gayle says his side is not afraid of the Proteas.

The Windies arrived in South Africa on Monday for a tour that includes three Tests, five ODIs and two T20s. Gayle’s men recently lost their first ODI against Zimbabwe, but won the next three to clinch the series.

“We respect the South Africans but we don’t fear them,” said the captain. “They are a good team and are playing good cricket at the moment, so we know the challenge at hand. “But we are confident and we believe in our ability. We played well in Zimbabwe and we are here in South Africa to continue the good work. They will be in for a fight.”

Gayle said he hoped to be fit for the first Test against South Africa on 26 December.

“My injury is coming on very well, hopefully I’ll be ready for the first Test, but I need to work with the physio.”

He also downplayed the absence of retired Brian Lara and the injured middle-order batsman Ramnaresh Sarwan.

“Brian is no longer in the team and Sarwan is injured and with this in mind we expect to see some of the younger players taking the opportunity to make a big contribution and possibly make a name for themselves. This is a big series and full of big opportunities.”