The cricketing world is in shock after it was announced that Australian legend Shane Warne has died, aged just 52.
Widely recognised as one of the best bowlers of all time, Shane Warne was a controversial character who was known for being outspoken off the field. He was much-loved in both his own country and overseas and was often described as one of the characters of the game.
Warne died in Koh Samui, Thailand, on 4th March 2022 from what is believed to have been a heart attack. He was found unconscious in his villa by friends, and although resuscitation efforts were made, medics were unable to revive him.
Reports have confirmed that Warne was in Thailand for a holiday with friends, a lads’ break away - but not one focussed on boozing and raucous nights out.
The cricketer had recently revealed on his Instagram that he was on a mission to get “shredded” and was determined to be in shape by the summer.
According to his manager, by the time Warne was on his getaway in Koh Samui, he had just finished a 14-day liquid-only diet. Apparently, this type of extreme calorie restriction wasn't unusual for Warne, who had resorted to the dramatic get-fit-quick tactics in the past.
Before travelling to Thailand, Warne had been complaining of chest pains and had been struggling to control his asthma. However, after consulting a doctor and being given the all-clear to travel, there were no signs that there were any serious, underlying problems.
On 4th March, it’s believed that Warne had a professional massage and spent the day watching Australia and Pakistan in a Test match, before collapsing while in his room. There were no signs of smoking, alcohol or drugs, and no foul play is suspected.
The family have expressed a desire for the remains to be repatriated to Australia as soon as possible. But Thai officials have confirmed a post mortem will need to be held. Some pools of blood were identified in the room, but these are believed to be due to resuscitation attempts.
Warne’s body has now been moved from the mortuary at Koh Samui to Surat Thani Hospital, a facility around 650km south of Bangkok for the post mortem.
As the world comes to terms with the sudden death of the cricketer, tributes have been paid to Warne’s outstanding talent.
Shane Warne was often credited with breathing new life into the art of leg spin, and it's his skill in this area that he will be particularly remembered for.
During his career, he took 708 Test wickets, an achievement which was only surpassed by his fellow leg spinner, Muttiah Muralitharan, one of his greatest contemporary rivals. He also took more than 1000 wickets in One Day Internationals (ODI), in a career spanning 1992 to 2007. He went on to play Twenty20 cricket from 2008 to 2013 before retiring from all forms of cricket for good.
Warne was recognised all around the world as one of the greatest bowlers of all time. He was named as one of only five Wisden Cricketers of the Century and was given the plaudit of Wisden Leading Cricketer of the World in 1997 and again in 2004.
There were many accolades handed to Warne as a result of his phenomenal performances on the pitch. This includes being named in Richue Benaud’s Greatest XI, and in Cricket Australia’s ODI’s Greatest XI of all time.
Since Warne’s death, it has been announced that the Great Southern Stand in Melbourne Cricket Ground will be renamed the S. K. Warne Stand in his honour.