Dubai, Feb 2: Former West Indies captain Brian Lara has backed young Test captain Jason Holder to become "an awesome leader", but believes he first requires the full support of the West Indies Cricket Board.
Holder became the West Indies' youngest ever Test captain at age 23 when he was appointed to the position last September, ahead of the tour of Sri Lanka.
And while the results have hardly been flattering, Lara said Holder needed the trust of his employers in order to succeed.
Lara is currently in Dubai playing in the Masters Champions League (MCL) cricket tournament.
"I think Jason could be an awesome captain and an awesome leader. He first of all has the ability to be in a team, which is very important," said Lara here on Monday, who led the West Indies in 47 of his 131 Tests.
"It is also very important that if you entrust a 23 or 24-year-old with the job of captaining the West Indies team, you have to make sure that you give him the support that is necessary. He has to have the confidence that he will be there for (an extended) period of time."
"If his performances are going to be judged too harshly then that does not make sense, as he doesn't have the experience to do the job (at the moment)."
The West Indies lost both Tests away to Sri Lanka and were beaten 0-2 in the subsequent three-Test series against Australia Down Under.
The Caribbean side have won just one of their last ten Tests - a shock five-wicket win over England last May at Kensington Oval in Barbados.
Lara, the West Indies' all-time leading run-scorer with 11,953 runs, blamed the WICB for the regional side's marked decline in world cricket.
"We have got a lot of things wrong in West Indies cricket. I believe that administratively we haven't been doing the right thing. There is no effort being made to create a proper academy for our youngsters," the 46-year-old lamented.
"The West Indies Cricket Board really hasn't grasped what is necessary, and unfortunately we are lingering at the bottom of world cricket."
Holder is also the West Indies One-Day captain and led the side at the Cricket World Cup in Australia and New Zealand last February.