There was a time when for the best batsmen in the world- Shane Warne was a Royal Threat. For his teammates, he was a skilled craftsman of leg break but for international cricket, a sensation that still brings joy, almost a decade after his retirement from the game.
With close to 300 one day wickets and 708 test scalps, Shane Warne was a bit of a both- a champion with a lion’s heart and a flawed genius of the ecstatic competition.
At his pomp, Warne was hard to pick and even hard to hit. Batsmen, save the likes of Sachin, Lara and Kallis had a hard time negotiating Warne’s unswerving brilliance which when trampled with could unfurl hurried disasters for Australia’s opponents. But what has made Shane Warne such a great that his name still commands the respect that only few have been able to match. We find out in our ode to the champion Aussie:
- A daring opponent
Warne outclassed the best in business. He trampled batsmen with seasoned triumphs in both versions of the game. He was faster in nipping the ball through the air and delivered with the daring and skill of a vulture crouching on his next target. He was quite a sassy opponent to deal with.
- A historic achievement in the game
In the long decade and a half career where Warne competed with class and sheer commitment, he foxed batsmen with his legendary abilities to turn balls wide outside the batsmen’s expectations. Using a firm grip and a brilliantly uncanny ability to spin it well from the juxtaposition of closely-knit fingers, Warne spun magic that helped him attain the tag of Australia’s highest test wicket taker with 708 wickets. Well supported by his 37 five-for’s, Warne had the tenacity and hunger to challenge his limits. In the end, it made him a crown star of leg spin.
- Making England a bunny
It is one thing to destroy attacks at the comfort of home conditions and quite another to surprise oppositions at their own backyard. Warne scalped an amazing 195 English wickets and most of his champion triumphs were crafted at world famous venues such as the Old Trafford, Trent Bridge, and Lords.
- An Ashes Hero
You aren’t quite completely Australian unless you have starred in a series triumph during the indomitable Ashes thunder. During the years where he was clearly post his peak, Warne emerged as the unlikely hero when he secured a triumphant 40 scalps in a single series. The victims, rather sufferers were the English during 2005 Ashes series.
- Not afraid to be hit
Warne did go for a few runs. On most occasions where he ruled with invincibility, he was also put to the sword by world class batsmen who managed to find a way beyond Warne’s burlesque frame and amazing spin mastery. But yet, despite going for runs, Warne stuck to the basics. He flighted deliveries and wasn’t afraid to pitch the bowl outside the off on many occasions. Using his characteristic fighting instincts, he tamed batsmen, forcing them to play erroneously, falling prey to his flighted genius leg breaks.
- An important component of the indomitable Aussie side in the 2000s
There was a time when international sides simply hated playing against Australia. Led by maverick leader Steven Waugh, a batting unit of the class and make-up of Mark Waugh, Matt Hayden, and Adam Gilchrist loomed large over opponents using the daring and guile of Shane Warne and McGrath, their two champion bowlers. Warne contributed heavily toward Australia’s 1999 and 2003 world cup triumphs.
- Giving respect to champion batsmen
In the entirety of his career, Warne was regarded as the third diamond in a shining troica that consisted of Sachin Tendulkar and Brian Lara, two of the most daring and skilled opponents who locked horns against Shane Warne. Some of Warne’s most memorable outcomes and battles came up against the batting ace of Tendulkar and the wizardry of Lara’s majestic willow. To both, Warne was tough to score against. And also, both Lara and Sachin have plundered Warne on occasions where the Aussies were denied likely victories.
- Affinity for Batsmen
Among Warne’s most favorite cricketers ever are Michael Clarke and Rahul Dravid. The historic jersey number of 23, a representation of Australia’s familiar success (being used by Warne himself) was passed on to Michael Clarke as the team heralded a new era. Warne also disagreed with Dravid’s nickname of “The Wall”. For a batsman who had brilliant strokes on both sides of the wicket, Warne was of the view that India’s famous No.3 was a fortress that required the might of fifty blazing cannons to be removed, once he was set.
- An accomplished Poker pro
Yeah, you read that right. Warne is a self-confessed pro at Poker, an engaging international rage where he’s said to have won a whopping $225,000 in a Vegas Casino in World Series of Poker, July 2015.
- Swinging it free in Golf
Warne, the man of many flavors wears a versatile sporting hat. He’s even adept at Golf, playing several local tournaments in Australia, England, and South Africa, drawing attention from all corners for his revered focus and ability to set himself targets that he ends up achieving with grace and ease, something that’s been a shadow to his cricketing fervor.
- Warne the champ
Shane Warne is one of the cricket’s enigmatic geniuses. He’s a flawed character, time and again making headlines for his tad bit repulsive pursuits of women and shenanigans outside the cricket turf. He’s been making news for his notorious flings and other paltry acts that often belittle his essence but that doesn’t mean that his unworthy histrionics can belittle his amazing career graph and truly stellar achievements on 22 yards.
The Man himself said one day –“I just play because I love playing and take as many wickets as I can “ and So He DID! Take A Bow Shane!