Windies v England Test - Men's

Gabriel charged for Root incident

West Indies quick to be investigated after on-field exchange during third Test in St Lucia

PAA

13 February 2019, 07:13 AM AEST

England captain Joe Root has stood by his decision to challenge West Indies fast bowler Shannon Gabriel after the paceman was charged by the International Cricket Council (ICC) for on-field comments during the third Test.

Root was on his way to a century on day three in St Lucia when he responded to an inaudible outburst from Gabriel by responding: "Don't use it as an insult. There's nothing wrong with being gay".

Gabriel was warned about his language by the on-field umpires Rod Tucker and Kumar Dharmasena, who later decided to lay a formal charge against the 30-year-old.

It will be adjudicated on in the first instance by ICC match referee Jeff Crowe.

Root, who suggested on the third evening that Gabriel "might regret" his choice of words, did not want to shed further light on the incident after England's 232-run victory but was more than happy with his own part.

Gabriel and Root in St Lucia // Getty
Gabriel and Root in St Lucia // Getty

"The ICC have got to handle things and I am not in a position to comment but throughout the series it has been played in the right manner between the two sides," he said.

"As a player you feel you have responsibilities to uphold on the field and I stand by what I did."

Speaking after finishing day three 111 not out, Root gave a measured assessment of the on-field exchange.

"It's Test cricket, he's an emotional guy trying to do everything he can to win a Test match... sometimes people say things on the field that they might regret, but they should stay on the field," he said.

Steve Davies, the former England wicketkeeper who came out as gay in 2011, supported Root's stance on Twitter.

Former England captain Nasser Hussain, in St Lucia in his role as a television commentator, also tweeted his admiration.

West Indies coach Richard Pybus told BBC Radio's Test Match Special on Monday: "If a comment was made we'll review it and if it was untoward we'll be addressing it."

Gabriel has been charged under article 2.13 of the ICC code of conduct covering directing "language of a personal, insulting, obscene and/or offensive nature".