My book an open and honest account: Gibbs

Johannesburg: Unruffled by his teammates` criticism and the threat of disciplinary action from Cricket South Africa, opener Herschelle Gibbs said his controversial autobiography detailing sexual promiscuity, alcohol abuse and divisions in the side is an "open and honest account."

"When you`re that forthcoming and honest you are bound to face that sort of criticism. I`ve been that honest. It`s not surprising," Gibbs was quoted as saying by `The Associated Press` at the launch of the book here.

The book -- titled `To the Point` -- has created quite a stir in South African cricket circles after Gibbs accused senior players such as skipper Graeme Smith, Mark Boucher, Jacques Kallis and A B de Villiers of being part of a "clique" which created divisions in the side.

Gibbs goes on to say that Smith was "simply too powerful" and even coach Mickey Arthur struggled to assert himself when faced with the skipper.

"That particular clique of Graeme and Mark and Jacques, and to a certain extent AB, were very outspoken when Mickey was coach. I`ve made it clear in the book that I thought that around Graeme, Mickey buckled a little bit. That`s how I saw it."

Gibbs said he got a message from Smith asking about the claims made in the book. "My answer to him was it didn`t take a rocket scientist to figure that out."

Gibbs, who served a six-month ban for involvement in match fixing during his chequered career, also said that he continues to admire late skipper Hansie Cronje despite his fall from grace due to the 2000 match-fixing scandal.

In the tell-all book, Gibbs has also given accounts of his sexual escapades, involving other South African players as well, during overseas tours.

"...hopefully people can respect the honesty," the 36-year-old said.

"I`ve been very open and honest about the whole thing. I knew from the start that it would get a lot of criticism, so be it. I`ve enjoyed the experience," he added.

The currently out-of-favour opener, who has played 90 Tests and 248 one-dayers, doesn`t foresee himself making the cut in the squad for next year`s World Cup but not because of his book.

"Book or no book, the squad has gelled so nicely over the last couple of months, and the youngsters that have come in have all performed ... I can`t see the squad changing at all before the announcement for the World Cup," he said.

Gibbs hoped that corruption, which has returned to haunt international cricket due to the spot-fixing allegations against the Pakistani trio of Salman Butt, Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Aamir, would be stamped out for good this time.

"I`m sure the ICC will try and make some kind of example, if proven guilty and it`ll prevent it ever coming out again," he said.


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