Ramnaresh Sarwan has dismissed all allegations levelled against him by Chris Gayle and has categorically denied playing a role in the opening batsman's ouster from the Jamaica Tallawahs.
Gayle was released by the Tallawahs under contentious circumstances and was subsequently hired by St Lucia Zouks, a development confirmed by the Caribbean Premier League franchise last week.
The self-styled 'Universe Boss' then proceeded to record a three-part video where he slammed former West Indies teammate and Tallawahs assistant coach Sarwan for acting like a "snake" and engineering his exit from the team.
Responding to Gayle's dramatic outburst, Sarwan labelled the whole episode as "unfortunate" and said he needed to respond to the accusations to preserve the integrity of the personalities named by the veteran southpaw.
"Christopher Gayle’s outburst disseminated via a YouTube video a few days ago is quite unfortunate. In that video, he has levelled false allegations and tarnished the good name and reputation of a series of persons," Sarwan wrote in a statement issued on his Facebook account.
"I was the focus of most of the onslaughts. I reply, not because I feel that Gayle’s rantings are worthy of it, but because I feel that the public’s record must be set straight and also, to protect the character and careers of so many people, whose image he sought to besmirch."
"No doubt, Gayle’s utterances have done immeasurable damage to the “gentleman’s game” of cricket, in particular, West Indian cricket," he added.
Sarwan recalled instances of standing up for Gayle despite a section of the cricket fraternity condemning him for a sexism controversy in the Big Bash League in 2016.
"Fans will recall, that when Ian Chappell called for Gayle to be banned from international cricket because of remarks he made to a female journalist, I issued a public call for fans to rally around Gayle. I stood up for him on every such occasion."
Delving into the details surrounding the non-selection of Gayle for the upcoming CPL season, Sarwan rubbished allegations of feeding a negative image of the star player to the Tallawahs management.
He elaborated that he was not part of the decision-making process that decided against retaining Gayle in the squad.
"I categorically deny any involvement in the decision or the decision-making process, which led to Gayle’s non-selection to represent the Jamaica Tallawahs in the 2020 Caribbean Premier League (CPL) Tournament," he claimed.
"In fact, the management of the franchise itself has issued a public statement that the truth is that this decision was made collectively by the Ownership and Management team which did not include Mr. Ramnaresh Sarwan."
The middle-order batsman, who played 87 Tests for West Indies, felt Gayle's public rant was not a good example for budding cricketers.
"My deep concern is that young and upcoming players who regard Gayle as a role model may think that this is an acceptable way of addressing problems which may befall them in their careers."