Gabriel clears the air on verbal clash with Root

West Indies fast bowler Shannon Gabriel has sought to clear-up speculations as to what he said to England captain Joe Root on the third day of the third test in St Lucia. In a statement released on Wednesday night, Gabriel admitted making a homophobic remark towards Root, saying it was because the England captain was smiling at him. In the statement Gabriel is quoted as saying: “The pressure was on and England's captain Joe Root was looking at me intensely as I prepared to bowl.

I recognize now that I was attempting to break through my own tension when I said to Joe Root: "Why are you smiling? Do you like boys?" It was then stump microphones picked up Root's response as the England captain was quoted as saying: “Don't use it as an insult. There's nothing wrong with being  gay."

Though there is no evidence of what Gabriel said he was charged with three demerit points, bringing his total to 8 within a two year period, resulting in him being banned for 4 One Day Internationals. As well as being banned, Gabriel was fined 75 percent of his match fee.

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