Sunday, April 22, 2007

Brian Lara departs a flawed genius

Over a career that spanned 17 years, Brian Lara has been a batting supremo of mesmerising charm who has entertained crowds on the world stage of international cricket.

To many of his fans and cricket lovers, the end came too soon when a terrible mix-up with Marlon Samuels limited Brian Lara to just 18 in his final international innings yesterday.

With a Test average of 52.88 from 131 matches and an ODI average of more than 40, Lara has done enough to look back with pride on a glorious career.

Lara who came into the West Indies team in the early 1990s, when there were still great cricketers, has been criticised as setting the wrong example. The West Indians' practices, according to observers, have been the shoddy and undisciplined consequences of late-night partying.

With Lara's team already out of the world cup, Lara has been roundly criticised during this World Cup campaign, with legends of the past dismissive of both the team's performances and preparation.

Lara has captioned his team thrice and few have made the game look better than he did. For better or for worse, no one else has shown such individual brilliance in a team sport.

Cheers to Brian Lara.

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