St.Lucia Zouks skipper Darren Sammy has stated he respects Chris Gayle's decision after the latter opted out of the 2020 edition of the Caribbean Premier League (CPL).
It was earlier reported by ESPNcricinfo that citing personal reasons, Gayle pulled out of the competition and informed the franchise about his decision on Tuesday.
"I support and respect his decision, especially as athletes; we hardly get time to spend with our families. It is even more important in this COVID situation where Chris has not seen his family for a while," Sammy was quoted as saying by Jamaica-Gleaner.com.
"I would definitely give him my blessings and support and, hopefully, he gets the quality time with his family that I have been getting with my family here in St Lucia."
Gayle, in April, had signed for Zouks as their marquee player and Sammy said it will be difficult for the franchise to replace a player of his calibre who is the highest run-getter in the history of T20 cricket.
"It's always going to be difficult to replace a player of Chris Gayle's calibre, especially the Zouks team, which was so excited to have Chris, who would have brought his experience and match-winning abilities," Sammy said.
"The show still has to go on and, hopefully, we can find someone who can come in and have an impact for us."
The tournament is currently scheduled to take place from August 18 to September 10, subject to approval from the government.