Gayle backs Bolt's cricketing ability

West Indies' opening batsman Chris Gayle rates the bowling of fellow Jamaican Usain Bolt and reckons the six-times Olympic gold medallist has what it takes to excel at the game.

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Gayle backs Bolt's cricketing ability
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Olympic 100m champion and world record holder Usain Bolt(R) poses with West Indies' Chris Gayle (AFP)

The sprinter expressed his desire to repackage himself as a big-hitting cricketer in Australia's Big Bash League following an invitation by Shane Warne after he repeated his Beijing 2008 Olympics feat with three more golds at this year's London Games.

Australian spin great Warne contacted Bolt about joining him at the Melbourne Stars club in the Twenty20 league in December.

"He wouldn't embarrass himself. In a charity game, he actually played against me and almost knocked my head off with a good competitive bouncer," Gayle said as his team started training for the Twenty20 World Cup in Sri Lanka.

"It is nothing to take lightly. I don't see anything wrong," added former West Indies captain Gayle, who communicates on a daily basis with Bolt.

The sprinter grew up playing street cricket and football in Jamaica and during the London Games said he wanted a trial at Premier League giants Manchester United.

West Indies start their World Cup campaign against Australia on September 22.

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