in reply to Re: Matching first Perl statement.
in thread Matching first Perl statement.

I'd suggest working from the back of the statement, stripping off the trailing comment (if it exists) until you find a semi-colon. Munch the leading white space, then you're done -- for the trivial cases.
If you know where the end of the statment it, then it would have been a trivial question ;) The problem is that you can't guess where the statement ends. Even stripping commments is not a trivial task. Consider the following line:

my $foo=';'; $foo =~ s#;##g; #comments start here

As you can see this would be tricky. I use '#' as regex delimters quite a lot. There are so many special cases in perl that you can't easily isolate things like "strip comments" or "first statement" into simple parsers.

For the origial poster, I would suggest looking at perlTidy for some ideas.

Simon Flack ($code or die)
$,=reverse'"ro_';s,$,\$,;s,$,lc ref sub{},e;$,
=~y'_"' ';eval"die";print $_,lc substr$@,0,3;