Shane Warne to his fans the one and only Warne. A cricketing icon in his country and across the world, a true inspiration to a generation of young cricketers; a revered figure in Australian cricket; and above all a great competitor. The game can only benefit with gems like Warnie around. A perfect leg-spinner with all the guiles to fox the batsmen.
Give Shane Warne a situation and he will respond with all his enthusiasm. When they said leg spin was an art forgotten, he arrived to give it a thrust. When they said leg-spin was dying, he came to the scene to revive it. Warne went from strength to strength, taking in his stride the best of the batsmen and carving some epic victories for Australia.
He took great delight in dominating the batsmen. Warne may have never troubled the Indians – Sachin Tendulkar, N. S. Sidhu, Rahul Dravid to name a few — but has been a terror for the others. Only a few have been able to read the wily Aussie and when he decides to fight the batsmen reckon the trouble that heads their way. His feats in Test cricket have been chronicled for eternity.
England was 1 for 80 in the famous test match when Shane Warne’s ball of the century curling from behind the legs to hit Mike Gatting’s stumps, was a phenomenal delivery. But what sets him apart is his amazing ability to attack in a limited over’s match. The majestic performance at Edgbaston helped Australia to make the World Cup final 1999, for the fourth time but importantly it made the critics sit up and take notice of Warne’s attacking bowling.
For a leg-spinner who adopts such in a limited over’s can’t be strange. Warne hauled his side back into the reckoning by taking three quick wickets, when he felt the ball in his palms, the leg-spinner knew that he had to be a strike bowler and not be happy by containing the batsmen.
It was a stiff test because South Africa was equally well-equipped to take on the determined Aussies. It was hazardous to guess who was more aggressive – the South Africans or Warne. It is not easy to strike when the captain wants you to. Lesser mortals would take time to gauge the bounce and pace of the pitch but not Warne. He does not waste time and over in trying to plan his line of attack.
When he stands in his position, he studies the batsmen and when pitted against them, makes no exceptions. There is a sense of pride in what he does. Shane Warne must take wickets or else he sulks. There have been times when he would have bowled ordinary stuff, but then such difficult times can hit any cricketer. However, Shane Warne does not bowl in fear of such confrontation with form and self-belief.
He is very epitome of a grand team man a great sportsman, and a role model who has inspired millions around the world. His match-winning stuff against South Africa in the semi-finals of 1999 was nothing new for Warne. Countless times he had given breakthroughs or run through the opposition and it was quite a challenge for a leg-spinner to excel in one-day cricket.
Shane Warne’s deeds over the last few years speak for him; Warnie had a poor run early in this World Cup. But his confidence never took a beating. As he tossed one batsman after another out of the reckoning, Warne steeled himself into per- forming some greater deeds, He seemed to have reserved his best for the big occasions, really.
He claimed four wickets for a mere 29 runs, 15 of them coming in his final over, Warne took one more step forward to enhancing his reputation. It has been a saga of toil and sacrifices and Warnie deserves all the praise, the Man of the Match being a small consolation for his gigantic effort.
Source – Vijay Lokapally