"My deepest condolences are with Warne's family"
Legendary cricketer and ‘King of Spin’, Shane Warne, has passed away at the age of 52 from a suspected heart attack.
The Australian icon was found dead in his villa in Koh Samui, Thailand.
In a statement released by Warne’s management, it read:
“Shane was found unresponsive in his villa and 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.”
The shocking news was announced just 12 hours after Warne tweeted his grief at the death of Australia’s great wicketkeeper, Rodney Marsh.
Sad to hear the news that Rod Marsh has passed. He was a legend of our great game & an inspiration to so many young boys & girls. Rod cared deeply about cricket & gave so much-especially to Australia & England players. Sending lots & lots of love to Ros & the family. RIP mate??
— Shane Warne (@ShaneWarne) March 4, 2022
Shane Warne reinvented the leg-spin and is the second-highest wicket-taker in Test cricket history with 708 wickets in 145 matches.
In 1993, the athlete made a name for himself with the ‘Ball of the Century’, dismissing England batsman Mike Gatting at Old Trafford.
However, Warne has a long list of impressive feats. He took 1,001 international wickets and led Rajasthan Royals to the IPL title in 2008.
As one of the most memorable spin bowlers to ever grace the game, this is a huge loss for cricket and the world of sport.
Fellow cricketers, athletes and celebrities took to social media to pay tribute and express their sadness.
Among those mourning was Indian cricketer Virat Kohli and ex-Indian batsman, Virender Sehwag.
Life is so fickle and unpredictable. I cannot process the passing of this great of our sport and also a person I got to know off the field. RIP #goat. Greatest to turn the cricket ball. pic.twitter.com/YtOkiBM53q
— Virat Kohli (@imVkohli) March 4, 2022
Virender said: “Cannot believe it. One of the greatest spinners, the man who made spin cool, superstar Shane Warne is no more.
“Life is very short, but this is very difficult to fathom.
“My heartfelt condolences to his family, friends and fans all around the world.”
Former captain of the Pakistan team, Shahid Afridi wrote:
“The game of cricket has lost what I consider a university of leg-spin bowling today.
“I was inspired by his bowling from the start of my career and it was always a privilege to play against him.
“My deepest condolences are with Warne’s family and loved ones.”
Shane Warne no more..
I’m Shocked and Shattered.Simply can't believe I’m hearing this.Very very sad day for our cricket community.The biggest superstar of my generation gone.Goodbye Legend @ShaneWarne #RIP Condolences to the family and friends. pic.twitter.com/TRWstn6knq
— Waqar Younis (@waqyounis99) March 4, 2022
The devastating news was also felt by Sachin Tendulkar who posted a heartwarming picture and message on Instagram.
Actor Mahesh Babu said: “Shocked and saddened by the news! A very sad day for world cricket!
“Rest in peace, Rodney Marsh and Shane Warne… you will be terribly missed!”
Shocked and saddened by the news! A very sad day for world cricket! Rest in peace, Rodney Marsh & Shane Warne… you will be terribly missed! #Legends
— Mahesh Babu (@urstrulyMahesh) March 4, 2022
Vikrant Massey said: “Absolutely stunned!!! You take a piece of every 90’s kid with you.
“Thank you for the memories. Thank you. RIP.”
In an emotional video, Shoaib Akhtar expressed how devastated he was about Warne’s passing:
“All the flashbacks are coming into my mind now.
“The games that I played against him, the way he mannered himself on the field, the way he played that game to the fullest.”
Labelling him as one of his favourite cricketers ever, Akhtar added:
“I was lucky enough to play against him and with him. But it is really shocking, I can’t believe it, I just can’t digest it.”
Shane Warne was a talisman for cricket and one of the most captivating bowlers with his magnificent variations of the ball.
His standout career is full of key moments such as his career-best figures 8-71 in a 1994 Test match against England.
Within the same year, Warne took a Test hat-trick, removing Phil DeFreitas, Darren Gough and Devon Malcolm in successive balls.
An impressive achievement considering it is only one of 46 hat-tricks in Test cricket history.
He also has 195 Ashes wickets, the most in the competition’s history and 38 more than second-placed Glenn McGrath.
As the world mourns the loss of a cricketing legend, Shane Warne’s legacy and mesmerising spin bowling will be remembered forever.