Record-holder Lara wishes Sachin luck

Cricket legend Brian Lara offered Sachin Tendulkar his best wishes for breaking his own world record of scoring the most number of runs in Tests.

updated: October 14, 2008 11:30 IST
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Cricket legend Brian Lara offered Sachin Tendulkar his best wishes for breaking his own world record of scoring the most number of runs in Tests, but said he would not be present personally to hail the milestone if and when it happens.

"I wish Sachin all the best. Records are meant to be broken. It's a pleasure to be counted in the elite list of players like Sachin and (Sunil) Gavaskar. We should appreciate Sachin for whatever he does", the retired West Indian batsman said on Thursday.

The 39-year-old left hander amassed 11953 runs in 131 Tests and 232 innings while Tendulkar is standing on the threshold of overhauling it, having so far tallied 11877 runs in 150 matches and 244 innings.

Tendulkar needs 77 more to go past Lara and is playing in his 151st Test at Bangalore against Australia.

Lara, on a promotional visit, said he would not be going to Bangalore to witness the feat if Tendulkar achieves it in the Garden City.

"I would have loved to be at Bangalore to watch him when he breaks my record, but I'm flying off to Australia tomorrow", he said.

Lara felt that if at all anyone can break Tendulkar's records it would be Ricky Ponting, the Australian captain.

"Ricky Ponting is the guy who can break Sachin's records," he indicated.

Lara cautioned cricket followers that while hailing the arrival of youngsters to the international scene, care must be taken to see that long-performing seniors do not leave the arena at the same time and create a huge void in a squad.

"Senior players should not quit at the same time. It happened to the West Indies when senior players left at the same time and the team became weak," he pointed out.

Lara was also emphatic that it should be left to the individual players to take a decision on when to retire from the game.

"A player should retire when he feels so (and not otherwise)", he said.

Lara described Sourav Ganguly, who is to call it quits at the end of the ongoing four-Test series between India and Australia, as a fine servant of the game in the country.

"He's been a great servant of Indian cricket, especially out of home", said the left-handed batsman who holds the world record for the highest Test innings of 400 not out.

Lara felt that it would be players like Virender Sehwag of India or fellow-West Indian Chris Gayle who looked best bets for breaking his world individual Test innings mark.

"It will be a player like Virender Sehwag or Chris Gayle. After the arrival of Twenty20 cricket batsmen are scoring runs faster than before," he said.

He cautioned India not to take Australia lightly in the ongoing rubber though the latter were not the same force as they were three--four years ago.

"They may not be as strong as they were 3-4 years ago, but they can beat any one on any day," he said.