ICC World Twenty20
Cops quell Gayle's party antics
Colombo - West Indian star batsmen Chris Gayle burnished his party-boy image on Wednesday when police broke up a late-night gathering in his hotel room during the ICC World Twenty20 cricket tournament in Sri Lanka.
Gayle and team-mates Andre Russell, Fidel Edwards and Dwayne Smith attracted the attention of police bodyguards as they let their hair down at the luxury Cinnamon Grand hotel in Colombo.
Three British female guests who were partying in the players' rooms were removed by officers and briefly arrested, a police statement said after the early-morning antics.
The West Indies are progressing well through the Twenty20 event, with a victory over New Zealand on Monday earning them a semi-final slot against Australia on Saturday.
"Ministerial Security Division (MSD) guards assigned to protect the players carried out the arrest and the three women were handed over to the Kollupitiya police station," the police statement said.
The women, who were not charged, were later released on bail, said a police official who declined to be named.
"There was no wrongdoing on the part of the players or the women and we are surprised at the police action," a hotel source said. "It is not against the law to be a guest of a player."
Gayle, 33, is famed for his extrovert attitude as well as his hard-hitting batting, and he drew admiration for his dance-style celebrations after dismissing England's Jonny Bairstow earlier in the tournament.
"If you want to see Chris Gayle, stripped to the waist, performing his gangnam dance, get to our hotel now. Serious Windies party," tweeted BBC commentator Jonathan Agnew on Tuesday.
The left-hander is one of the most feared batsmen in all formats of the game with a penchant for big hits against both pace and spin.
His 117 off 57 balls against South Africa in the inaugural ICC World Twenty20 in 2007 was the highest individual score in the competition until Kiwi Brendon McCullum hit 123 off 58 balls against Bangladesh in the current edition.
West Indies' management and the International Cricket Council (ICC), organisers of the World Twenty20, both confirmed the hotel incident but declined to comment further.
Officials said the British High Commission (embassy) in Colombo had also been informed about the arrests.
Hotel security has been a key issue at international cricket events since then-Pakistan coach Bob Woolmer was found dead in his room during the World Cup in Jamaica in 2007.
His death was initially treated as murder before police concluded he died of natural causes.