New York, Sep 6: Legendary Windies batsman Brian Lara reveals that his favourite bowler to bat against was Australian spin-king Shane Warne, but when quizzed on who was the greatest spinner he ever came up against, the answer wasn't as straight-forward.
Over an international career spanning 17 years, Lara came up against some of the greats in the Test and ODI arena, but the clash with Warne was his preferred bout. Answering a question via his Reddit AMA on who he most liked to square up against, Lara answered, "Shane Warne, he played for the best team in the world during my era, he was, and still is, regarded as the best leg-spinner to play the game, an ICC report on Thursday said.
"It was a battle I just embraced in some of the largest cricketing arenas!"However, another candidate was brought into the equation when the topic of 'greatest spinner he ever faced' came up, with Sri Lanka's Muttiah Muralitharan, the world's leading Test wicket-taker with 800 scalps, sneaking into contention."Always a difficult question this!" said Lara.
"Muttiah always confused me in the early part of our confrontation, whilst Shane Warne didn't," he said."Having said that, as my innings grew I felt I had more control over Muttiah, whilst Shane seemed to grow in confidence. They were definitely the two best spinners of my time!" said Lara.
Being over-awed by the occasion was not something which worried Lara, and the prospect of facing up to the best in the business didn't change his pre-match preparations.
"Never during (the game), any nerves were only before I walked out to bat. That 22 yard battlefield isn't somewhere you want to lose your composure!" Lara said. "Preparation wasn't any more intense than what you have to put in for any great bowler. I always assess my opposition before taking the field," he added. (UNI)