Royal Challengers Bangalore are working on retaining Chris Gayle for the 2012 IPL even though his one-year term with them as an injury-replacement player has expired. Sidhartha Mallya, one of Bangalore's franchise directors and the owner's son, told ESPNcricinfo, "There are ways to keep Chris [Gayle]. We are obviously working on it and looking at every possible opportunity."
Gayle was the architect of a complete turnaround for Bangalore in 2011, arresting a four-match losing streak and setting up a record seven-match victory run that eventually led Bangalore to the final.
Under current IPL rules, contracts for replacement players only include a year's participation, on the premise that the injured player will be available the following season. New replacement players without three-year contracts - Gayle, for example - must go into an auction where all the franchises would be able to bid for them. Gayle's explosive performances with the bat - he was IPL2011's leading run scorer, and had a strike rate of 183.13 - are expected to trigger a bidding war should he be put into an auction.