Colin Croft speaks with Lara after century
Stabroek News
November 14, 2001

CC-Q: You have answered your critics with a vengeance, especially those who thought you were not really interested in playing for the West Indies?

BL-A: "During the last year, I have had a bit of injury, and I know that my last test century was in Australia. I did have a few scores against South Africa in the Caribbean, but no big ones, so this is very pleasing here today. Hopefully, it is the start of some good things for me here in this series."

Q: What does your presence, as a veteran, do for the young players in the present West Indies cricket team?

A: "I think that it is important to keep scoring, even when I am injured. Competition within the team now is much greater than in recent times gone by, which is good, and I think our younger players are special, Chris Gayle, Ramnaresh Sarwan, who showed his colours today, Marlon Samuels and Darren Ganga."

"There is always going to be critics, but I simply have to go out there and do my job properly. The Coach (Roger Harper) actually asked me what I planned for this series, and I simply suggested that I wanted to spend as much time in the middle and then see how things go from there. Hopefully the team will benefit from that."

"Sarwan is a class act. He will get a hundred this series, I am sure. It may not be the next innings but he has it in him to do well. He will score many centuries. Before this series ends, he will get his 1st Test century. I can bet on that. He likes spin bowling and coming from Guyana, he understands it."

Q: What is the state of the match, and perhaps, in your mind, the state of West Indies cricket now?

A: "I think that we now have the players to get us through this transition period, and they will mature in years to come to do much better for us."

"First of all, I worked on a few things about my technique, about playing a bit straighter. It is nice to get the result, back myself. It set the tone for the innings."

"We are in a good position with more than 300 in a day, with only three wickets down, but it would be disappointing if we only get 400 or 450. We must bat Sri Lanka out of the game. Our 2nd innings should not be too important. We must make 5-600 runs and put them under pressure in the 1st innings. We cannot allow them to get back in the game"