Brian mighty

Legend Lara recalls how he gave Nass and Athers the run-around...

By Oli Burley - @SkySportsOli.   Last Updated: 16/05/12 12:01pm

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England-slayer Brian Lara is back!

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England v West Indies, First Test

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"It was good to play against Michael towards the end of his career - I even tried to get down the wicket to him in a game against Jamaica!"
Brian Lara Quotes of the week

The West Indies legend, who crashed 400no and 375 against England in 2004 and 1994 respectively, will swing by the Sky Sports studio at 10am on Thursday as part of the build-up to the first Test, at Lord's.

Lara racked up no less than 11,953 runs in a Test career spanning 131 games - averaging 62.14 across 51 innings against England - and no doubt is hoping some of his rampant run-scoring will rub off on the current crop of tourists. Read his views on Shivnarine Chanderpaul here.

One man who no doubt will be delighted to see the 43-year-old again is former England skipper Nasser Hussain.

Not only was poor old Nass a sub fielder the first time Lara broke the world record Test score at St John's, Antigua, but he got the run-around again a decade later as BCL cut loose...

skysports.com: So, Brian, tell us about Nass...

BRIAN: I remember he came up to me after my 2004 innings and said something along the lines of 'flippin' hell, I can't believe I've had to field for five days TWICE, chasing leather and watching you bat for hours and hours...'

skysports.com: Yep, that sounds like him!

BRIAN: I actually remember Nass and Michael [Atherton] from the 1988 Youth World Cup in Australia.

I've always thought Michael was a very good captain but unfortunately for him he was in charge in 1994 when I first broke the Test record. That summer I came to England to play for Warwickshire and I remember spending time with Michael off the field - we got to know each other a lot better. Obviously we competed against each other fiercely, but in terms of his knowledge of cricket he is somebody that you would search out. He was somebody that you could learn a lot from.

skysports.com: Who else helped shape your career?

BRIAN: David Gower is one of my favourite left-handers of my youth, along with Roy Fredericks and Allan Border. I admired any left-hander who could score runs against the might of the West Indies attack of the time. Roy Fredericks was definitely my idol but I truly admired David and AB for their style and the way they went about playing against us.

I tried to pick up something unique from each player - with David it was my flair, while there was a little bit of Allan's grit and determination in my game, too.

skysports.com: Did you learn anything from watching Beefy?!

BRIAN: A bad golf swing! Back in March I teed it up for Sir Viv Richards' 60th birthday celebrations at the Cedar Valley Golf Club, in Antigua. It was nice to see Sir Ian Botham there along with Sir Richard Hadlee and Sir Garfield Sobers. I only played cricket once against Beefy, for the West Indies against Worcestershire on our 1991 tour of England, because he retired the following year.

skysports.com: Now we mustn't forget Mikey Holding and Bumble...

BRIAN: It was good to play against Michael towards the end of his career - I even tried to get down the wicket to him in a game against Jamaica!

Michael is definitely in my top four of great West Indies bowlers. If you had to include a spinner it would be Lance Gibbs but I'd definitely have Michael Holding, Malcolm Marshall and Curtly Ambrose as my pace attack.

As for my memories of Bumble, they centre mainly on his time as England coach and principally the 1997/98 series which we won 3-1. I've always found him a very funny, affable character and these days I definitely enjoy his commentary!

Join Brian and the Sky Sports boys for all the build-up to the first Test between England and the West Indies from 10am on Thursday on Sky Sports 1 HD.

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