n file photo
world class: Record-holding Brian Lara — dubbed the Prince of Port of Spain — said he sees himself returning to the game as a mentor and coach.
* Reuters photo. World class: Record-holding Brian Lara — dubbed the Prince of Port of Spain — said he sees himself returning to the game as a mentor and coach.
n file photo
world class: Record-holding Brian Lara — dubbed the Prince of Port of Spain — said he sees himself returning to the game as a mentor and coach.
* Reuters photo. World class: Record-holding Brian Lara — dubbed the Prince of Port of Spain — said he sees himself returning to the game as a mentor and coach.

West Indies superstar Brian Lara has not ruled out making a comeback to first-class cricket.

The ‘Prince of Port of Spain’ has considered ­dusting off his gear and resuming his career — but under one condition.

“I am 41 and if I come back in any capacity it must have a propensity towards coaching as well,” he told the Bermuda Sun.

“There are still a lot of people who want to see me lift a bat and play some shots but obviously I see myself more in a mentoring role than anything else.

“Yes, I can still play and I’m capable of doing well out in the middle but it must not be the main focus — it can’t be.”

Lara, who will be at next week’s PGA Grand Slam of Golf pro-am event, bowed out of international ­cricket in 2007 but many felt he still had much to offer.

It was a decision the record-breaking batsman does not regret.

He said: “I’ve had a ­pretty long run — 17 years with the West Indies and I’ve been playing since I was a six-year-old kid in the streets.

“I had a fun time and I was quite happy when I walked away. I feel quite comfortable watching from the sidelines.”

The gifted left–handed batsman currently holds the records for the highest individual scores in Test (400 not out) and first class (501 not out) cricket. He also holds the record for the most runs (28) scored off a single over in a Test match — a feat he achieved off South African left-arm spinner Robin Peterson in 2003.

It has been more than a decade since West Indies cricket went into decline, something Lara attributes to many factors. He said: “A lot of funds are needed and a different way of thinking as well. We have an archaic way of going about things —that’s not going to work in the modern-day sport.

“Until that is solved I don’t see anything around the corner in terms of consistency and stability. One-off victories against the best teams in the world are still there — we can still pull those off — but to say we are going to ­perform consistently for any long period of time, that’s nowhere near on the horizon.”

Lara reckons the talent exists to take West Indies cricket to the next level but he feels that more needs to be done to ensure that talent reaches its full potential.

Talent

He added: “There is always a lot of promise in the Caribbean.

“We have produced the best young cricketers but it’s a matter of harnessing their talent— something which we haven’t been able to do for many years. The likes of Sir Vivian Richards, Sir Garfield Sobers, Gordon Greenidge and Desmond Haynes, these are all self-taught and natural talents that emerged and ­progressed to make us the best.

“But now there is a lot more technology and academies where people are paying more attention to the youngsters, which I think is a serious shortcoming in the Caribbean.

“There is talent, it’s just how we can get that talent enhanced and prepared for the big stage. 

“Hopefully we can do something about it in the near future.”