Lara hints at return to West Indies set-up

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The Independent Online

West Indies batting great Brian Lara is prepared to come in from the cold and join other Caribbean cricket legends in rescuing the game in the region ahead of the winter tour of Australia.

Lara admits he is happy not to be involved in the current set-up following years of poor on-field results and off-field controversy, including a recent players' strike that has only just been resolved.



The once powerful Windies look set to arrive Down Under in disarray , but the 40-year-old is willing to play his part in dragging their game back to its feet.



"Not much other than encouraging the guys," Lara said when asked on radio 2UE what his involvement in West Indies cricket was.



"There is so much wrong with it at the moment that I'm very happy that I'm not in there causing some of the problems.



"There (will be) some involvement in the future, I am almost certain that is going to be the situation.



"I am not pushing myself on anyone and I've not been asked but I believe it's a fait accompli that the likes of Sir Vivian Richards or Gordon Greenidge (or myself)... we all have to play a significant part in West Indies cricket in the near future."



Lara fears the players' strike coupled with Australia's hunger to make amends for their Ashes loss leaves West Indies in danger of heavy defeat during the upcoming three-Test series.



But long term he sees some hope for his former team on the back of the success in the Twenty20 version of the game.



Lara has taken great heart from Trinidad & Tobago's performance in reaching the semi-finals of the Champions League Twenty 20 and believes exposure at that level can only be good for all forms of cricket in the Caribbean.



"There is less talent (needed) and more luck so, yes, we can do pretty well in it," he said of Twenty20 cricket.



"But what it's done is create an opportunity for first-class cricket to excel along the same levels as international cricket.



"Victoria and NSW and Trinidad & Tobago are all being represented at that level (in the Champions League).



"That's what I love about it; that first-class cricket is coming on the same level as international cricket.



"That can only be a positive thing."



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