Write an Article Live Scores App

Shane Warne - The Rockstar who played Cricket!


Genius at work

Whenever I watch the Rajasthan Royals play in the IPL V, one cricketer always seems conspicuous by his absence.

He is none other than Shane Warne – an artist who choreographed a Cinderella story for a bunch of underdogs in the IPL’s very first edition. As far as I can remember, I unfailingly rooted for Warne in India-Australia matches. Yes, I always hoped for a swashbuckling innings from Tendulkar, but I also wanted to see a fifer against Warnie’s name.

Even his harshest critics would agree that Warne’s contribution to the game is too gigantic to be ignored. What is it about this man that makes it so hard for the public to forget him, even six years after he has retired from international cricket?

Before Warne arrived on the scene, leg spin was being spoken of as a dying art. Right-handed batsmen usually prefer the ball turning into them than away, yet there were very few who could successfully exploit the art. Then in the early 90′s arrived Warne, looking more like a flamboyant  beer-guzzling beach surfer than a Test cricketer. His figures in his debut Test against India were quite unflattering, yet understandable as Indian batsmen are renowned for their ability to tackle spin even in their sleep (note: this fact only applies for spin; it’s a very different story with quality fast bowling but alas, I digress).

Warne began displaying the ability to turn the ball square and most importantly – he had great control over his line. A severe drought of quality leg spinners in the past ensured that batsmen had never before seen a cricket ball perform such a variety of tricks after landing on the pitch. Mike Gatting can firmly attest to this after being bowled by a delivery that eventually came to be known as the ‘’ball of the century’’, which was incidentally Warne’s first ever delivery in an Ashes series.

Though conventional leg spin was the prime weapon in his arsenal, he was far from being a uni-dimensional bowler. There was the reliable wrong’un, the slider, which hurried on to the pads, and the flipper, which kept deceptively low. The quality of the pitch was never a major influence on his wicket-taking ability. Australian wickets are not known to be very helpful to spinners (just ask Ravichandran Ashwin), yet he grabbed wickets in heaps, season after season. At one time he held the record for most wickets in Tests, that was eventually overtaken by his chief rival, Muttaiah Muralitharan. The question of who was greater among the two will forever remain an unresolved debate in cricketing lore.

There are some players who graft mindboggling records and statistics but fail to leave a lasting imprint on the mind. Warnie’s legacy on the other hand goes much beyond such mundane trivia. The pause and the stare before starting his run-up and his immense popularity with the crowds always created an atmosphere of anticipation that you could sense even in front of a TV set. Cynics may point towards his misdemeanours like failing a dope test or his never ending list of marital infidelities but his fans will cherish the fact that one who could display such divine skills showed human frailties too. For them, his controversies only seem to enhance his aura.

However, keeping all gushy sentiments aside, my biggest complaint against Warne is that he was too controversial to become the captain of Australia. Seeing what he could do with a bunch of “no-hopers” in the IPL, it would have been fascinating to see what he might have achieved as captain with the insane amount of talent that the Aussies possessed. But his adventurous and laid back attitude didn’t him waste time pondering on such ifs and buts.

It is quite evident from the fact that he comfortably juggles things like playing poker professionally, modelling and of course, dating Elizabeth Hurley. Does Warne deserve a place in the pantheon in the elite list of all-time greats? My answer is that I simply couldn’t care less.

To me, he will always be the rockstar who chose the cricket field as his stage.

You might also like to read:



West Indies vs India 2nd Test, Day 1: Live West Indies vs India 2nd Test, Day 1: Live. IND 25/0
Angelo Mathews dedicates Sri Lanka's victory to their passionate fans Sri Lankan skipper relieved to finally get back to winning ways following a tumultuous phase
Twitter Reactions - West Indies vs India 2nd Test, Day 1 Twitter Reactions - West Indies vs India 2nd Test, Day 1.
Steven Smith vows to correct Australia's abysmal record in Asia Skipper wants his team mates to bounce back from Pallekele loss
Windies reeling at 88-4 against India in second test
Spotted a hungry, restless artist in Brett Lee: 'UnIndian' director Anupam Sharma
India reduce Windies to 88/4 at lunch on Day 1 of second Test
Sri Lanka vs Australia: 5 talking points from the 1st Test Kusal Mendis arrives as Australia succumb to the turning ball.
5 slowest partnerships in Test history Do you know what is the slowest partnership in the history of Test cricket?
CPL 2016: Barbados Tridents vs Guyana Amazon Warriors, Live Streaming, Team News, Probable XI, Prediction Barbados Tridents vs Guyana Amazon Warriors CPL match team news, probable line-ups and where you can watch it.
Windies opt to bat in second Test vs India
Lord's like bell for Eden Gardens
Mustafizur Rahman set to be sidelined for six months due to shoulder injury Mustafizur Rahman will need to undergo surgery on his injured shoulder.
Tamil Nadu Premier League: Dindigul pick R Ashwin, Thoothukudi get Dinesh Karthik A total of 151 players were selected by the eight franchises.
5 CPL players who should be playing Test cricket for West Indies With these players, WI would be a much stronger Test side.
England have potential to rule world - Hoggard
CPL 2016: Jamaica Tallawahs vs St Lucia Zouks, Live Streaming, Team News, Probable XI, Prediction Everything you need to know about the match between Jamaica Tallawahs and St Lucia Zouks.
Virender Sehwag wishes Sonu Nigam with another unique tweet Sehwag wished Sonu Nigam on his birthday with the cricketer sharing a memory when he was singing one of Nigam's songs.
Taylor, Watling take New Zealand clear of Zimbabwe
Justice Lodha hails SC verdict on BCCI reforms
Virender Sehwag posts funny tweet on James Anderson's birthday James Anderson became the latest 'victim' of Virender Sehwag.
Tamil Nadu Premier League - Draft LIVE Tamil Nadu Premier League - Draft LIVE.
Cricket-Sri Lanka beat Australia by 106 runs to clinch opener
Twitter reacts to Sri Lanka's Test win over Australia Twitter reacts to Sri Lanka's Test win over Australia.
More →
Related articles