<i>Lara a Sachin fan</i>
Legendary West Indian batsman Brian Lara has said that Sachin Tendulkar still has two years of cricket left in him and feels that all Indians should be proud of his achievements.
In an interview to Kapil Dev, and aired on HEADLINES TODAY, Lara said that Tendulkar's class and longevity makes him different from any other cricketers.
“Sachin has done a great job. He started at the age of 15-16, two years before me and is still playing five years after my retirement. This is something every Indian should be proud of,” he said. “I've played with him many times and he is a real gentleman. He has stopped playing T20 and I don't know how many ODIs he'll play, but I think he'll play Tests for a couple of years. But whenever he'll take retirement, world cricket will miss him.”
Lara, 43, singled out his favourites to win the ongoing World T20 in Sri Lanka.
“India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka [not in that order] are the favourites, according to me. Pakistan is a terrific team, I saw the practice match in which they defeated India. Sri Lanka is very dangerous team, and also India. Anyone of them have the ability to win the title,” he said.
The left-handed batsman said that West Indies also have a good chance of winning the tournament because of the unpredictable nature of the format.
“West Indies is a very good team but they are good in pieces. They have some very good players in their ranks but they need to perform collectively. As a group they are really dangerous and are worthy favourites,” he averred.
On Dhoni, he said that the India skipper has done a remarkable job and he should be allowed to decide his future.
“In the last few years, he has done well. I know questions are being asked of him but only he knows when he has to go. No captain wants to be sacked, so we should allow him to decide his future,” he said.
Lara supported the T20 format, saying that it is an important factor in the growing popularity of the game.
“T20 is a very interesting format; cricket needs it right now. We have seen so many exciting players in this format. I would also love to play it, but now I'm enjoying it as a spectator,” he said.
On his own decision to quit cricket, Lara said he did not do so because he was not enjoying the game, but and because he wanted to make way for youngsters.
“I left cricket not because I was not enjoying, but because I thought West Indies needed young players to lead them. But today's cricketers are very different. I only see them with their headphones on when they sit in the bus and go to the stadium or hotel,” he pointed out.
“We used to watch great players like Sobers, Sir Viv etc. and that is how we could evolve ourselves. I want to see that thing in current players also.”