Lara answers critics with century

Published: Wednesday, November 8, 2000, 1:45 [IST]
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Perth: Brian Lara, named last week in cricket's match-fixing scandal, answered his critics on Tuesday with a brilliant century in West Indies' opening match of their tour of Australia.Lara smashed 108 from 107 balls in a One-day charity match against the ACB Chairman's XI in suburban Perth.

West Indies piled on 276 for two from their 50 overs, with opener Sherwin Campbell finishing unbeaten on 111, before the match was abandoned because of rain.Former captain Lara was accused by an Indian bookmaker of accepting money for under-performing in two one-day matches.

He denies the allegations in an official Indian report.He would not meet with journalists after Tuesday's game but issued a series of quotes through the team management. ''I'm trying to focus on the series, but it's been a tough week,'' he was quoted as saying.''Everything will come to fruition I hope. Right now I have a responsibility to West Indies cricket not to let anything affect me.

I have to pull on the blinkers and go out and do my best by getting runs,'' he said.A storm erupted during the interval, forcing the umpires to abandon the match before the locals, whose team included retired Test batsman David Boon, had the chance to bat.(c) Reuters Limited.

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