Lara has high hopes for WI

Brian Lara lavished praise on Sachin Tendulkar as he talked to Sky Sports about the icon’s upcoming retirement and the current state of West Indies cricket.

Tendulkar is just about to begin his final series in Test cricket, against the West Indies, and Lara says that he has had the finest career out of any cricketer he knows.

“I believe Sachin has done a tremendous job, not just for Indian cricket but for world cricket,” said Lara, who is in London in his role as Ambassador for Trinidad & Tobago.

“If there’s any accolade I can place on him it's that, although everybody has their opinion about who is the best, but Sachin Tendulkar has definitely had the best cricket career out of any cricketer that I have known.”

The double world-record holder added: “The amount of people he has affected, the amount of matches he’s played – it’s the greatest cricket career that anyone has ever played out.”

Lara knows it will be tough for the West Indies out in India, especially with the home pitches set up to help give Tendulkar a rousing send-off. On Thursday Shane Shillingford dismissed him for just 10 runs, but Rohit Sharma made a debut century to put India in the driver’s seat after two days of the first Test in Kolkata.

"We’re very good in the shorter version of the game, but still struggling in Test matches, let’s see what happens in India – I believe there will be two batting paradises for Tendulkar to get lots of runs so let’s see if we can stave off defeat over there," said Lara, who was last year inducted into the ICC Hall of Fame.

Out of today’s current crop of world stars, Lara picked out three batsmen he thought were the best around, along with his tip for the biggest star of the future.

“I don't like to meddle in it too much, but looking at the new version of the game and trying to place somebody who is on top in all forms of the game – I would think AB de Villiers is someone who has held their own, Kevin Pietersen has had a few injuries but he’s someone I have great respect for as well.

Lara added: “Virat Kholi is definitely someone for the future and I’m a little bit worried about my scores in the 400 and 500 region with this young player! He scores quickly, loves all versions of the game and he’s tremendous for world cricket.”

Thu, 11/07/2013 - 10:17