Lara retired a bit too early, says WICB chief

Published: Sunday, April 22, 2007, 23:53 [IST]
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Bridgetown, Barbados:West Indies Cricket Board president Ken Gordon has described Brian Lara's decision to retire from international cricket ''as a bit hasty''.

''I think Lara has some more cricket left in him'', Gordon said, adding that he would have liked him to stay on with the team for at least one more major tour.

Gordon told Trinidad News, ''If you ask me personally, I would have liked to have seen him perhaps stay on for the English tour.

But you have to take other people's views into account and clearly his mind was running in a different direction.'' He claimed he had no knowledge of Lara's decision to quit the game before April 19.

''If you had asked me that at the beginning of that match, I would have said yes, it had come as a surprise. But by the time the seventh or eighth wicket had fallen, I got a message that he wanted to see me I sensed that something was coming. And from that point onward there was no longer the surprise element. Because I knew something would be happening for him to ask me to see him at such short notice and with such urgency,'' the WICB chief said.

''Clearly Brian has been thinking about his future for sometime.

He didn't discuss it as though he was thinking about it. He presented me a fait accompli. So I think we must wish him well,'' he added.

Gordon also came hard on Lara's critics, saying, ''People may say lots of things about he's done this and he's done that.

But let's understand, there's a price that goes with genius. All our real greats, many of them have tended to be awkward, or people for one reason or another have been critical of them because I suppose they are driven by different forces and they think differently.'' ''We have to take the whole picture and accept the good with the bad. But overall, I think he's so much more on the plus side. He's been tremendous for West Indies cricket and I'd really like to see us honour that,'' he added.

Meanwhile, amidst all the hype around Lara's last international match, another exit took place with far less fanfare. For England coach Duncan Fletcher too, it was a last day at the office after an eight-year stint in the job, and some of his team members were appreciative of his efforts with the English side.

Reacting to Fletcher's retirement senior team member Paul Collingwood told the BBC, ''I am not sure whether the time really was right for him to go. Fletch has continued to change his techniques. He is constantly looking at new ideas. He is a very good coach, who put his heart and soul into the job.'' ''Obviously results have not gone our way this winter but our individual performances have been poor. Fletch has done everything in his powers for us to perform at the high level,'' Collingwood accepted while writing in his website column.


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