Lara bows out with a whimper - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Lara bows out with a whimper

22/04/2007 06:12:23 AM Comments (0)

West Indies captain Brian Lara's farewell to international cricket was ruined by a run out mix-up on Saturday in the final World Cup Super Eights match with England.

Lara fell for 18 in his side's 300 all out when Marlon Samuels hit the ball to mid-on, called his skipper for a run and then changed his mind, leaving a dejected Lara stranded.

Although both struggling sides were out of contention for the semi-finals, the match was given sudden significance by Lara's announcement on Thursday that he was retiring from all forms of international cricket after the match.

England coach Duncan Fletcher also stands down after game following eights years in charge.

The 37-year-old Lara, who holds the record for the top test score (400 not out) and highest first class knock (501 not out), received a massive ovation from a packed Kensington Oval and was given a guard of honour by England as he came to the crease.

But a fairytale final innings was not to be and his disappointment was shared by thousands in the stands as he left the pitch after just 39 minutes holding his bat aloft before his own team gave him another salute.

Opener Chris Gayle at least treated the crowd to some Lara-like shots, smashing a 58-ball 79 to leave West Indies on a healthy 131 for one after 23.5 overs.

Devon Smith (61) looked in good touch until Paul Collingwood again produced a stunning one-handed diving catch at backward point.

Samuels half made-up for running Lara in his final innings by hitting an entertaining 51 as West Indies made 300 for the first time in the tournament.

England captain and occasional off-spinner Michael Vaughan, under pressure because of poor recent scores, finished up with three for 39.

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