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Legendary Australia leg-spinner Shane Warne has died

Shane Warne acknowledges the crowd 2006/7 Ashes
Shane Warne acknowledges the crowd 2006/7 Ashes
©Reuters
 

His management company stated that Warne had been found unresponsive in his villa on the Thai island Koh Samui on Friday.

"It is with great sadness we advise that Shane Keith Warne passed away of a suspected heart attack," they said.

"Despite the best efforts of medical staff, he could not be revived.

"The family requests privacy at this time and will provide further details in due course."

 

Warne took 708 Test wickets, the second most of all time, in 145 matches over a 15-year international career. He was also in the Australia side that won the 1999 50-over World Cup and he recorded 293 dismissals in 194 ODIs from 1993 - 2005.

He retired from International cricket in 2007, following Australia's 5-0 Ashes whitewash of England at home, also retiring from first-class and List A cricket later that year with Hampshire, for whom he had played for five seasons, and had captained since 2004. He continued to play Twenty20 franchise cricket until retiring from all formats in 2013 and had since worked as a TV commentator and pundit, as well as holding coaching roles at several T20 franchises.


Shane Keith Warne - Cricket World 's Mayukh Bhattacharya

 Life can be uncertain. We all know that. What is hard is to accept something which you never expected to happen anytime soon. That is how the cricketing fraternity has reacted to the sudden passing away of the greatest leg spinner of all time, aka, Shane Keith Warne.

Warne made his debut when I was barely a month old. By the time I had seen the “Ball of the Century”, he was more than just an established cricketer. His mentor Terry Jenner had once said that the greatest attributes of a good spinner are courage, skill, patience, unpredictability and spin. According to him, if you had spin, you could always develop the other areas. He also said that the other thing that people never saw in Warne was the size of his heart. Seeing the tributes that have poured in since this news broke, one can definitely make out that his heart touched people not just in the cricketing fraternity, but across professions and countries.

What always stood out for me as a young cricket fan were two things – that smooth gliding run up to the crease and his determination to not accept that a game is lost until he had tried his level best to turn it around. Such was his skill that he would be able to pull off the latter 9 times out of 10. Be it the 1992 World Cup final or the 2005 Ashes series (40 wickets at 19.92) or lifting the maiden IPL trophy with a team of underdogs, Warne wrote his script to near perfection.

He wasn’t any ordinary cricketer. He had his fair share of controversies as well and a big part of that had to do with his larger-than-life attitude. When he retired from international cricket in 2007-08, you almost felt that you wanted to see more of him. Thanks to the IPL and the BBL, we did see a little more of him. That included becoming the first captain to lift an IPL trophy and for the young cricket fans who don’t know what this man could do, check out the YouTube video of him telling commentators how he would get Brendon McCullum out in the BBL and then succeeding in doing that.

Even post his retirement, Warne’s commentary was a breath of fresh air. He would sit in the commentary box and spot a batsman’s weakness. He would strategize how he would get him out. More often than not, his strategy, if implemented by the on-field captain, would fetch results. He was also one of those blokes who went out of his way to help cricketers and young leg-spinners. His fondness of Ravindra Jadeja back in the inaugural IPL days is well known. Be it a Yuzvendra Chahal or an Adil Rashid or even a Steve Smith, Warne would take time out to help these people become better at their art. He was also very vocal about his opinions about players and never held back if someone did not impress him with their skills or performance.

As Pat Cummins mentioned, Warne is a “once-in-a-century” cricketer. The likes of Jacques Kallis, Brian Lara and Sachin Tendulkar were his fiercest rivals on the field. Yet, they have spoken about how good a friend he was off the field. He was a charisma on the field and off it.

I did not know Shane Warne as a person and was nowhere close to knowing him anytime soon either. Yet, even after sleeping over the news, I still haven’t come to accept the fact that he is no more. There is a famous Bollywood movie dialogue in Hindi which says – “Babumoshai, zindagi badi honi chaiye, lambi nahi,” the English translation for which means – “Sir, life should be big and not long.”

Warnie, no doubt, lived a big life. Rest in peace, KING! This was a wrong’un which nobody saw coming.


Vale Shane Warne – Cricket Australia Statement

 

Australian cricket, along with the entire cricketing world, is in a state of shock at the loss of Shane Warne, a true cricketing genius, who has died aged 52.

Cricket Australia Chair, Dr Lachlan Henderson, said: “Shane Warne is one of cricket’s true legends.  The outpouring of shock and sadness at this news is testament to the esteem in which he is held across the world.

"Arguably the greatest and most influential bowler the world has seen, Shane has been a hero and inspiration to millions of cricketers everywhere. He created cult status for leg spin bowling at a time that pace bowlers dominated the game.

"This has been a tragic couple of days with the passing of Rod and Shane and we continue to acknowledge their extraordinary impact on cricket in Australia and the legacies they leave. They were giants of the game with personalities to match.

"Our thoughts are with Shane’s family and particularly his children Jackson, Brooke and Summer."

 

Cricket Australia Chief Executive Officer Nick Hockley, in Pakistan for the first Test of the Benaud-Qadir Trophy series, said: “Shane was one of the most talented and charismatic cricketers we have ever witnessed. He loved cricket, had an extraordinarily astute understanding of the game and his influence and legacy will last for as long as it is played.

“Wisden named him as one of the five cricketers of the twentieth century and he was rightly placed alongside the names of Bradman, Hobbs, Sobers and Vivian Richards.

“We are in a state of complete shock at his sudden passing and our thoughts are with his family, his many friends and the legion of fans from all over the world who loved and admired Warnie for his unbelievable bowling skills, his humour, warmth and engaging personality.”

Australia men’s captain Pat Cummins said: “On behalf of the entire playing group and support staff here in Pakistan, I want to express our shock and sadness over Shane’s sudden passing. We are all numbed by the news.

“Shane was a once-in-a-century cricketer and his achievements will stand for all time, but apart from the wickets he took and the games he helped Australia win, what he did was draw so many people to the sport.

“So many of us in the playing group grew up idolising him and fell in love with this great sport as a result, while many of our support staff either played with him or against him.

“It has been a terrible couple of days for Australian cricket with the passing of Rod Marsh and now Shane. Our thoughts are with both families and, in Shane’s case, particularly with his parents Keith and Bridgette, his brother Jason and his children Jackson, Summer and Brooke.

“The game of cricket was never the same after Shane emerged, and it will never be the same now he has gone. Rest in peace King.”

 

Pat Cummins issued this message on behalf of the men’s squad in Pakistan - Shane Warne is one of the most influential cricketers in history. He almost single-handedly reinvented the art of leg-spin when he burst onto the international scene in the early 1990s, and by the time he retired from international cricket in 2007 he had become the first bowler to reach 700 Test wickets.

A central figure in Australia’s ICC Cricket World Cup triumph in 1999, when he was player of the match in both the semi-final and the final, Wisden Cricketers’ Almanack recognised Shane’s achievements by naming him as one of its Five Cricketers of the Twentieth Century.

Shane’s strength of character and enormous resilience saw him bounce back from career-threatening finger and shoulder injuries, and his stamina, his sheer will to win, and his self-belief were key factors in Australia’s great side of the late 1990s and early 2000s.

Shane finished his international career with 708 Test wickets and a further 293 in One-Day Internationals, placing him second in the list of all-time international wicket-takers behind his great friend and rival Muttiah Muralitharan of Sri Lanka (1347). Shane also captained Australia in 11 One-Day Internationals, winning 10 and losing just once.

At first-class level he was a passionate Victorian and enjoyed a long association with English county Hampshire. And at the end of his playing career, he also had successful stints in the Indian Premier League, captaining the Rajasthan Royals to the inaugural title in 2008, and the Big Bash League in Australia with the Melbourne Stars.

After he hung up his bowling boots, Shane continued to offer so much to the sport as a coach and commentator. In 2021 he worked with the London Spirit in the inaugural edition of The Hundred in the United Kingdom, something he was set to reprise this year.

He also worked as a broadcaster, and his forthright views and incredible insights gave viewers all over the world a deeper insight into the sport he loved.

Vale Shane Warne - South Australian Cricket Association Statement 

 

The South Australian Cricket Association is shocked and saddened by the passing of Australia’s greatest bowler Shane Keith Warne.

Warne revived the art of leg-spin at an international level, inspiring a generation of spinners who sought to emulate his spin and variations.

He finished his Test career with the then all-time record of 708 dismissals, including 56 at Adelaide Oval.

Growing up in Melbourne, Warne represented the University of Melbourne Cricket Club and St Kilda Cricket Club before making his first class debut at age 22.

Quickly recognised by national selectors for his unmatched ability to create movement with his relaxed grip, Warne made his Test debut the following summer.

Recognition and plaudits for his career continued long after Warne’s retirement.

Warne’s 2006 Ashes performance is memorialised in the Avenue of Honour at Adelaide Oval.

The perpetual Warne-Muralitharan Trophy was first awarded to the victor of Australia-Sri Lanka Test series in 2007-08.

“Warnie thrilled South Australian cricket fans for over a decade” said South Australian Cricket Association President Andrew Sinclair.

“We were incredibly fortunate that he saved some of his most incredible fourth innings performances for Adelaide Oval.

“Thousands of South Australians have spent years in the nets trying to perfect Warnie’s flipper or googly. He made the craft of leg-spin bowling look easy. When he took the ball, invariably the momentum of the match turned.

“We are deeply saddened for his family and his many friends in the cricketing world. Vale Shane Warne”.

ICC expresses sadness at the sudden passing of Shane Warne


The International Cricket Council has expressed sadness at the sudden passing of legendary Australian leg-spinner Shane Warne at the age of 52.

In a statement, ICC Chief Executive Geoff Allardice expressed shock and sadness at Warne’s passing and said his impact on and off the field would be remembered for generations.

“I was stunned to hear the news of Shane’s passing. He was a true legend of the game, who changed the landscape of cricket by reviving the art of leg-spin. His larger-than-life personality, extraordinary skill and immense cricketing intellect ensured fans were glued to their seats whenever he was involved in a game.

 “His contribution off the field was also remarkable, where he shared his time and experiences so generously with young players, especially up and coming leg-spinners. He also established a successful career in the commentary box, where his insightful and forthright views on the game made him one of the first-choice commentators for broadcasters in most cricketing countries.

 “He will be sorely missed, and our thoughts are with his family, friends and fans at this difficult time, said Allardice.

Warne made his Test debut in 1992 against India at the Sydney Cricket Ground, going on to become the most successful leg-spinner of all time. He played 145 Tests, finishing with 708 wickets that included 37 five-wicket hauls and 10 10-wicket match hauls. In 194 ODI appearances, Warne snared 293 scalps.

Warne was inducted into the ICC Hall of Fame in 2013 and named as one of Wisden's Five Cricketers of the Century for his unparalleled achievements in an illustrious 15-year career that ended in 2007.

He helped Australia win the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup in 1999 and took more wickets than any other bowler in Ashes cricket, with a tally that stood at 195. After retiring from international cricket, Warne doubled up as captain and coach of the IPL Franchise team Rajasthan Royals, guiding them to the title in the league’s inaugural edition.

A flamboyant personality both on and off the field, Warne also found success as a commentator and was considered one of the sharpest analysts of the game.

 


Official Cricket Australia Website