Last week, Shane Warne, one of cricket’s all-time greats, died of a suspected heart attack at the age of 52 in Koh Samui, Thailand, while on holiday.
Warne was the second-highest wicket-taker in the history of Test cricket, behind Muttiah Muralitharan, with 708 scalps to his name.
Warne played 194 One Day Internationals for Australia, in which he scalped 293 wickets. The right-hander was also handy with the bat as he scored 3,154 runs in his Test career. He amassed 1,018 runs in the 50-overs format. The leg-spinner took a total of 1001 wickets and was the first-ever bowler to scale the peak of 1,000 international wickets.
Warne, who made his Test debut against India at the iconic Sydney Cricket Ground, was named as one of Wisden’s Five Cricketers of the Century for his unparalleled achievements in a 15-year career between 1992 and 2007.
In 2013, he was inducted into the ICC Hall of Fame.
He helped Australia win the World Cup in 1999 and took more wickets than any other bowler in Ashes cricket, the tally standing at 195.
Warne played domestic cricket for his home state of Victoria and English domestic cricket for Hampshire. He was captain of Hampshire for three seasons from 2005 to 2007. Warne retired from international cricket in January 2007 at the end of Australia’s 2006–07 Ashes series victory over England.
In 2007, Warne was named in Australia’s greatest ever ODI team. He played in the first four seasons (2008–2011) of the Indian Premier League for the Rajasthan Royals, where he played the roles of both captain and coach, winning the competition in 2008. In the 150th anniversary of the Wisden Cricketers’ Almanack, Warne was named in an all-time Test World XI. In 2012, he was also inducted into the Cricket Hall of Fame by Cricket Australia. In 2013, Warne was inducted into the ICC Cricket Hall of Fame.
In a fan poll conducted by the Cricketers’ Almanack in 2017, he was named in the country’s best Ashes XI in the last 40 years. In February 2018, the Rajasthan Royals appointed Warne as their team mentor for the IPL 2018.
Warne revolutionised cricket thinking with his mastery of leg spin, which many cricket followers had come to regard as a dying art due to the difficulty of bowling the deliveries accurately. Warne helped overturn the domination of cricket by fast bowling that had prevailed for two decades before his debut.
After retirement, he regularly worked as a cricket commentator, predominantly on Australia’s Nine Network. He worked for charitable organisations and also endorsed commercial products. In recognition of his skill, a statue of him bowling was placed outside the Melbourne Cricket Ground.