Legendary West Indies batsman Brian Lara cited the role of his father after being inducted into the ICC Hall of Fame at a ceremony as part of the LG ICC Awards in Colombo on Saturday
The left-hander dedicated his award to his father, Bunty, who died before his son made his international debut.
Lara said: "This person you see today before you accepting this ICC Hall of Fame honour is someone he moulded. He ensured that I had everything I needed to succeed as a cricketer and in life, even in trying times. He made a special effort to make sure everything was there.
"I had to work hard but I knew I had strong support. My biggest pain was that he did not see me play a Test match, but having the West Indies team in Trinidad at his funeral was a special tribute to the man who made sure I was given the tools to play this glorious game and make such a lasting contribution."
The Trinidadian had sister Agnes and brother Winston at the ceremony, both of whom played their parts in their sibling's success.
Lara said: "Tonight I had my brother and my sister here with me. Agnes is the one who took me to my first coaching clinic when I was six, and Winston was a role model as a stylish right-handed batsman...so to have them here is very special."
Lara's career was littered with records, breaking the highest Test score in 1994 and then regaining his position in 2004 - both against England in Antigua. The 43-year-old also holds the record for the highest first-class score - 501 - and is the leading Test runscorer for West Indies.
"As a boy, you never really thought of Hall of Fames, you never really thought of records," said Lara. "Growing up in the '70s my heroes were Clive Lloyd, Viv Richards and Roy Fredericks as a left-handed batsman. I am happy I was able to spend 17 years in the West Indies (national team) and was able to contribute in a way worthy of this honour. It is nice to share it with my family. It is something I want all West Indians to aspire to."