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Remembering Warnie

Thu 24th Mar 2022

Shane Warne is considered one of the greatest bowlers in cricket history. He was an incredible sportsman, a larrikin, a maverick and an Aussie legend through and through, but perhaps those who knew him best would say it was his grateful and enormous "lionheart" that shone brightest.

We take a look back on the charismatic life of Shane Warne, in his own words.

Shane Warne is cheered from the MCG as he holds the ball aloft to celebrate taking five wickets in the innings as well as his 700th wicket during the 2006 Boxing Day Test.
Shane Warne is cheered from the MCG as he holds the ball aloft to celebrate taking five wickets in the innings as well as his 700th wicket during the 2006 Boxing Day Test.

For the love of cricket

To me, cricket is a simple game. Keep it simple and just go out and play.

I just play because I love playing and I try and take as many wickets as I can.

It's got nothing to do with money. If it had something to do with money and me coming out to play cricket, I'd still be playing in the IPL. This is something that I'm passionate about. It's something new ... and that's what enticed me ...And for my kids and Elizabeth to come and see me playing cricket out here at the MCG, which will be pretty special.

With just about every player in Australia, his whole goal and ambition is to play for Australia. That's why they're playing first class cricket. It's just a different attitude.

Shane Warne carries teammate Michael Clarke from field after Clarke's Man of the Match performance in their win over India in Bangalore, India 10/10/2004.
Shane Warne carries teammate Michael Clarke from field after Clarke's Man of the Match performance in their win over India in Bangalore, India 10/10/2004.

The Spirit of the Game

Sachin Tendulkar is in my time the best player without doubt - daylight second, Brian Lara third.

I think we have got the wood on South Africa, but that does not mean they are not a good team. They intimidate a lot of teams but we intimidate them. There is no disrespect for South Africa; they are a very good team.  

Rahul Dravid being known as 'The Wall' is pretty much spot on. 'The fortress' could also describe Rahul. Because once Dravid was set, you needed the bowling equivalent of a dozen cannon firing all at once to blast him down.

I'll be going to bed having nightmares of Sachin just running down the wicket and belting me back over the head for six. He was unstoppable. I don't think anyone, apart from Don Bradman, is in the same class as Sachin Tendulkar. He is just an amazing player. 

Shane Warne takes off after completing his hat-trick at the MCG.
Shane Warne takes off after completing his hat-trick at the MCG.

Batting

My only problem is the fear that opposition bowlers might go for my fingers and that's why I was scared of the short ball. Now I am struggling with the ball pitching up and swinging away. I just keep nicking that one.

Bowling

Part of the art of bowling spin is to make the batsman think something special is happening when it isn't.

Shane Warne was a columnist for the Herald Sun. Picture: David Caird
Shane Warne was a columnist for the Herald Sun. Picture: David Caird

Self-doubt

All my coaches tell me that I have been under-achieving.

400 wickets is 400 more than I thought I'd get.

My life was falling apart and then to come out and play and have my best ever - 40 wickets, 250 runs ... but the only reason I could do that was because of the way I thought and I think I'm pretty strong mentally. I think I am anyway, pretty strong to get over whatever it is.

I'm proud of what I've achieved in cricket, as once I didn't think I was good enough.

Life's too short

The problem is there's still a big kid inside me who likes to have fun. I am passionate about my cricket and I love my family, but I'm also a kid and maybe I need to grow up... And maybe I don't.

People make mistakes and I've probably made a few more than others, but unfortunately mine are also a bit more public. That's the way it is. You've just got to get on with life. After all, it's not a rehearsal.

Launch of the new Ferrari F430 at Palladium, Crown. Brendan Fevola, Mike Mckay, Aaron Hamill and Shane Warne fight for the drivers seat in the latest Ferrari.
Launch of the new Ferrari F430 at Palladium, Crown. Brendan Fevola, Mike Mckay, Aaron Hamill and Shane Warne fight for the drivers seat in the latest Ferrari.

Fallibilities

I've slept with a couple of people and made some poor choices and put things in jeopardy with... what I was happy with, and that's my own fault. I've got no one else to blame about that stuff.

Proud Australian

With Australians we're saying we're going to win before we start playing and pretty much keep on saying that.

Opinion

We've just got to be careful - with all sports, let alone cricket - I think there's so much emphasis on doing the right thing all the time, but I think the public want to be entertained when they come to watch sport.

I also think there's too many players who say the same boring answers, they don't even have to turn up to interviews because journalists answer their own questions the way they ask them. Unfortunately the way it is now players are so afraid to say anything, but I'd like them to be honest.

Warne was captain and coach of the Rajasthan Royals in the IPL in 2009.
Warne was captain and coach of the Rajasthan Royals in the IPL in 2009.

Motivation  

Never give up; just absolutely never give up.

Find a way to get back into the game, find a way to build a partnership, find a way to catch a ball, find a way to stop it.

I have always tried to move on from disappointments as fast as I can.

The first thing is to be patient, which is probably the hardest thing to do. Don't worry if blokes are whacking you out of the park because you still have the opportunity to get him out next ball, even if it's not the same ball.

Philosophy

My life was falling apart and then to come out and play and have my best ever - 40 wickets, 250 runs... But the only reason I could do that was because of the way I thought and I think I'm pretty strong mentally. I think I am anyway, pretty strong to get over whatever it is.

Classic Warnie

I am no dummy, mate, that's for sure. 

When I turned 36 I realised - the likelihood is that in four years time I'll be 40.  

I don't really know what to say….I just sort of sat there, stunned. And then I go, 'F*** you, mate. We're going to beat ya'.  

I still eat pizzas, I still like pies, I still have spaghetti hoops for breakfast… but it's in moderation now.  

You can't afford to live your life with regrets.  

Shane Warne passed away on the 4th March, 2022.

The king of spin will forever be remembered for his passion for the game, his love of family and zest for a life well lived. Rest in peace Shane Warne.

By Kirsten Jakubenko

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Sources:

  • https://www.foxsports.com.au/cricket/foxsportscomau-looks-back-on-the-career-of-aussie-spin-great-shane-warne-in-his-own-words/news-story/52c1a461b9159ddde72ceb49d01b86ae
  • https://www.planetsport.com/cricket/news/shane-warne-in-words-you-cant-afford-to-live-your-life-with-regrets
  • https://www.brainyquote.com/authors/shane-warne-quotes
  • https://www.news.com.au/sport/cricket/f-you-mate-shane-warne-opens-up-on-startling-276000-bribe/news-story/ff4eeabba369d87ff009b775cbe544d6
  • https://www.espncricinfo.com/player/shane-warne-8166
  • https://www.news.com.au/entertainment/celebrity-life/celebrity-deaths/ed-sheeran-andy-lee-sir-elton-john-pay-tribute-to-cricketing-legend-shane-warne/news-story/808d5dfeaa62e6c1c74e2eae5cf44832