Former West Indies captain Brian Lara believes there has to be a revamp of the current system especially pertaining to talent identification and transition in the region. Lara was speaking on Monday at his residence on Lady Chancellor Hill, Port of Spain, where the batting maestro celebrated his 47th birthday with members of his family, friends, members of children’s and elderly homes.
Speaking to the media, Lara lamented: “We got the best talent in the world, there is no other country that creates teenagers like the West Indies team but the transitioning to the international stage is where everyone is beating us. We take very good talent and turn it into mediocre whereas the rest of the (world) takes mediocre and turns it into good talent.” The Prince of Port of Spain said he is willing to work with the region’s youths at a holistic level and is keen on joining the West Indies Legends in charting a way forward for the regional side He noted though that he will only do so if their plans are implemented.
Lara was not short of emotions as he discussed the current cricket situation in the Caribbean. He indicated that the confidence of not only the players but the Caribbean has risen because of the success at the recently concluded ICC World T20 in India where the men and women emerged victorious.
Concerning the controversial comments made by the West Indies T20 captain Darren Sammy after winning the title, Lara said: “These guys won a major tournament and people may argue it may not be the best time to do it. However, he may feel it is the most potent time to do it on a world stage.” Lara did not wish to get into the ICC condemnation of the regional players’ behaviour, adding: “ICC got their rules and regulations and as West Indians we have to put aside what the ICC said and seek ways to improve West Indies cricket.” He confessed that throughout his career he was in similar situations to the current West Indies players.
“My experience with the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) was not too far off from what these guys are experiencing at the moment. It is indeed troubling and disheartening especially when you’re playing your hearts out.”