At 52 years old, Shane Warne has this physical status:
Shane Keith Warne (born 13 September 1969) is an Australian cricket commentator and former international cricketer who captained the Australian national team in One Day Internationals (ODI).
Widely regarded as one of the greatest bowlers in the history of the game, Warne was named one of the Wisden Cricketers of the Year in the 1994 Wisden Cricketers' Almanack.
He was the Wisden Leading Cricketer in the World in 1997 (Notional Winner).
He was banned from the sport in 2003 for testing positive for a prohibited substance.
Following the ban, he was named Wisden Leading Cricketer in the World for the year 2004 in the 2005 Wisden Cricketers' Almanack.
In 2000, he was selected by a panel of cricket experts as one of the five Wisden Cricketers of the Century, the only specialist bowler selected in the quintet and the only one still playing at the time.
Warne was born in Upper Ferntree Gully, Victoria, a suburb of Melbourne, on 13 September 1969, the son of Brigitte and Keith Warne. His mother was German. He attended Hampton High School from Grades 7–9 before being offered a sports scholarship to attend Mentone Grammar, where he spent his final three years of school.
Warne's first representative honours came in the 1983–84 season when he represented University of Melbourne Cricket Club in the Victorian Cricket Association's under-16 Dowling Shield competition. He bowled a mixture of leg-spin and off-spin, and was a handy lower-order batsman.
The following season, Warne joined St Kilda Cricket Club, which is located near his home suburb Black Rock. He started in the lower elevens and, over a number of seasons, progressed to the first eleven. During the cricket off-season in 1987, Warne played five games of Australian rules football for St Kilda Football Club's under-19 team. In 1988, Warne again played for the St Kilda Football Club's under-19 team before being promoted to the reserves team, one step below professional level. Following the 1988 Victorian Football League season, St Kilda delisted Warne and he began to focus solely on cricket. In 1990, Warne was chosen to train at the Australian Cricket Academy in Adelaide.
In 1991, Warne moved to the UK and joined Accrington Cricket Club of the Lancashire League as their professional player for that year's cricket season. After initially struggling in English conditions, he had a good season as a bowler, taking 73 wickets at 15.4 runs each but scored only 329 runs at an average of 15. The committee at Accrington decided not to re-engage Warne for the 1992 season because they expected their professional to contribute as both a batsman and bowler.
Warne made his first-class cricket debut on 15 February 1991, taking 0/61 and 1/41 for Victoria against Western Australia at Junction Oval in Melbourne.
Warne signed a $400,000 contract to play for Hampshire County Cricket Club in England for the 2000 season. He returned to Hampshire as the captain for the seasons between 2004 and 2007. For Hampshire he scored his only two first class centuries and took 276 wickets at an average of 25.58.
Warne was selected for the Australia B team, which toured Zimbabwe in September 1991. In the second tour match at Harare Sports Club, Warne recorded his first first-class score of five-wickets-or-more in an innings when he took 7/49 in the second innings, helping Australia B to a nine-wicket win.
In December 1991, upon returning to Australia, Warne took 3/14 and 4/42 for Australia A against a touring West Indian side. Peter Taylor, the incumbent spinner in the Australian Test team, had taken only one wicket in the first two Tests, so Warne was brought into the team for the third Test against India at the Sydney Cricket Ground a week later.
Warne had played in seven first-class matches before making his Test-level debut for Australia. He was called into the Australian team in January 1992 for a Test against India at Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG). He took 1/150 (Ravi Shastri caught by Dean Jones for 206) off 45 overs.
Warne took 0/78 in the fourth Test in Adelaide, recording overall figures of 1/228 for the series, and was rejected for the fifth Test on the pace-friendly WACA Ground in Perth. Warne's poor form continued in the first innings against Sri Lanka at Colombo, in which he recorded 0/107.
On 22 August 1992, however, Warne took the last three Sri Lankan wickets without conceding a run in the second innings, leading to a second-innings collapse and contributing to a 16-run Australian win. Sri Lankan captain Arjuna Ranatunga commented in an interview; "a bowler with Test average of more than 300 came and snatched the victory from our hands".
Despite his match-winning spell, Warne was left out of the second Sri Lanka test before taking 0/40 in the third-and-final test of the series. Warne was again left out of the First Test against the West Indies in the 1992–93 Australian season. Greg Matthews played in Warne's place; despite Australia being in a strong position on the final day, they could not dismiss the West Indies on a turning surface. Warne was recalled for the Second Test in Melbourne, a Boxing Day Test in which he took 7/52 in a match-winning performance in the second innings.
In 1993, Warne was selected for Australia's Ashes tour of England, in which he was the leading wicket-taker for the six-Test series, with 34. His first ball of the series was called the "Ball of the Century", bowling the experienced English batsman Mike Gatting with a ball that turned from well-outside leg stump to clip the off bail. Warne took 71 Test wickets in 1993, a then-record for a spin bowler in a calendar year. New Zealand batsmen significantly contributed to his tally. Early in 1993, Warne took 17 wickets in Australia's tour of New Zealand, tying Danny Morrison with 17 as the top wicket-taker for the series. When New Zealand toured Australia for three Tests in November and December, Warne took 18 wickets and was named "player of the series".
Warne featured in South Africa's tour of Australia in 1993–94 and Australia's return tour in March 1994. In the second Test of South Africa's tour at the SCG, Warne took ten wickets in a Test for the first time in his career. His 7/56 in the first innings and 5/72 in the second was not enough to secure victory for Australia; on the Test's final day, Warne was part of an Australian batting collapse and South Africa won the Test. He was named one of the Wisden Cricketers of the Year in the 1994 Wisden Cricketers' Almanack.
Australia sought to retain the Ashes when England toured for a five-Test series in 1994–95. Warne took a career-best 8/71 in the second innings of the first Test at Brisbane Cricket Ground (the Gabba), before taking 27 wickets in the five-Test series. In the Second Test, a Boxing Day Test at Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG), he took his first-and-only Test hat-trick, dismissing tail-enders Phil DeFreitas, Darren Gough and Devon Malcolm in successive balls, the last of which was caught by David Boon. Warne also took his 150th test wicket, a caught-and-bowled off Alec Stewart. Warne secured the Ashes for Australia with the bat. In the Third Test at SCG, he and fellow tail-ender Tim May survived the final 19 overs in fading light on the fifth day to secure a draw and a 2–0 series lead that meant Australia would retain the Ashes regardless of the result of the fourth and fifth Tests. Later in 1995, Warne toured the West Indies, taking 15 wickets in four Tests as Australia defeated the West Indies in a Test series for the first time in almost 20 years.
In the southern-hemisphere summer of 1995–96, Australia played a home series against Pakistan and Sri Lanka. Warne took 11 wickets in the first Test against Pakistan but broke his toe in the second. Selectors included him in the squad for the third Test days later to give him the chance to prove his fitness. Warne took four wickets in Pakistan's first innings and another four in their second, and was named the player of the series.
Warne was a key member of Australia's squad for the 1996 Cricket World Cup, which was held in India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka. Warne took 12 wickets, including a man-of-the-match 4/36 in the semi-final against the West Indies, and Australia qualified for the final. Before the final against Sri Lanka, Australian captain Mark Taylor publicly said Warne was not "vital" to his team and that Warne alone could not win the World Cup. Warne conceded 58 runs for no wickets in the final; Australia lost the match to first-time champions Sri Lanka.
The West Indies toured Australia for a five-Test series in the southern-hemisphere summer of 1996–97. Warne took 22 wickets in the series, and a further 11 in Australia's three-Test tour of South Africa in early 1997. In the northern summer of 1997, Warne returned to England with the Australian team to play for the Ashes. After struggling for form early in the tour, Warne took 24 wickets at an average of 24.04 and Australia won the six-Test series 3–2.
In the Australian summer of 1997–98, Warne took 19 wickets in New Zealand's three-Test series in Australia and 20 wickets in three Tests against South Africa, in the second of which he took five wickets in the first innings and six in the second, becoming the second Australian after Dennis Lillee to take 300 Test wickets. In late 1997, Australian media criticised Warne for his weight; however, The Australian wrote he was one of Australia's three most-influential cricketers, the others being Donald Bradman and Lillee. Journalist and former English cricketer Derek Pringle said Warne passed the 300-Test-wicket mark at the age of 28; "we are in the presence of true greatness and not some pretender to the great figures in the game's history".
Later in 1998, Warne was a member of Australia's touring squad of India. Finding Indian food not to his liking, he had tinned spaghetti and baked beans flown in from Australia. Australia's two top pace bowlers Glenn McGrath and Jason Gillespie missed the tour due to injury so Warne bowled more often than usual. He took 10 wickets but conceding 54 runs each, going for 0/147 in India's only innings of the second-and-series-winning Test in Calcutta. Warne's dismissal of Rahul Dravid in the first innings of the final test at Bangalore took him past Lance Gibbs' tally of 309 wickets, making Warne the most-successful spin bowler in Test Cricket. Australia lost the series, breaking a run of nine Test-series wins.
In early December 1998, the Australian Cricket Board (ACB) said three years earlier it had fined Warne and Mark Waugh for accepting money from a bookmaker for information about pitch and weather conditions; this was called the John the bookmaker controversy.
After suffering a shoulder injury, Warne returned to international cricket in the fifth Test of the Ashes series in Australia in January 1999. He missed Australia's tour of Pakistan and the first four Ashes Tests. During Warne's extended absence from the Australian team, his understudy Stuart MacGill played in his place, taking 15 wickets in three Tests against Pakistan and another series-high 27 wickets against England. Upon Warne's return, he and MacGill bowled in tandem to the team for the fifth Ashes Test at SCG, where MacGill took twelve wickets and Warne two.
The 1999–2000 Ashes series was the last for Australian captain Mark Taylor, who retired. Steve Waugh was appointed as Taylor's replacement while Warne was promoted to vice-captain. Warne, however, was dropped from the Test team during Australia's tour of the West Indies in early 1999. Warne took two wickets in the first three Tests of the series, leading to calls for his removal from the team from Australian media. For the final test, Warne was replaced by off-spinner Colin Miller, who with MacGill took eight wickets between them and Australia won the Test to retain the Frank Worrell Trophy. Warne's form recovered in the One Day International (ODI) series against the West Indies, and he was selected to play in the 1999 World Cup in the United Kingdom.
Just before the start of the 1999 World Cup, the International Cricket Council (ICC) fined Warne gave him a two-match suspended ban by for talking to a newspaper about Sri Lankan captain Arjuna Ranatunga, saying; "There is plenty of animosity between Arjuna and myself. I don't like him and I'm not in a club of one." Australia wanted to win their first Cricket World Cup since 1987. Warne took 12 wickets in the preliminary phases of the tournament, and Australia qualified for a semi-final against South Africa. The semi-final match became notable for the dramatic fashion in which it finished; Warne was the man of the match, dismissing key South African batsmen Herschelle Gibbs, Gary Kirsten, Hansie Cronje and Jacques Kallis. Australia faced Pakistan in the tournament's final. Pakistan batted first and were all out for 132; Warne took 4/33. Australia comfortably reached the target to win the World Cup. Warne was the tournament's joint-top wicket-taker with Geoff Allott, and was named the man of the match in the final.
After his World Cup performances, Warne was retained as Australia's vice-captain for tours of Sri Lanka and Zimbabwe later in 1999. The following Australian summer, he played in all Tests of the series against Pakistan and India. He reached his highest score with the bat in the first Test against Pakistan in Brisbane, with 86, before matching that score in the first Test against India in Adelaide the following month. Warne's performances in the Brisbane Test were overshadowed by the Joe the Cameraman controversy, in which an off-field microphone picked up a jibe about the abilities of Australian bowler Scott Muller during the match. A Channel Nine cameraman subsequently confessed to making the "can't bowl, can't throw" remark many had believed was made by Warne. Warne took 18 wickets over the six summer Tests and Australia won both series 3–0. He then took another 15 wickets in Australia's 3–0 tour of New Zealand in March 2000. In the first Test of the series at Eden Park, Auckland. Warne surpassed Dennis Lillee's 355 wickets as Australia's leading-ever wicket-taker.
In 2000, Warne joined English county side Hampshire, for which he played during the year's northern-hemisphere summer. During the county season, reports Warne had repeatedly sent lewd SMS messages to an English nurse emerged. In August 2000, the ACB removed him as Australia's vice-captain, citing his history of off-field indiscretions. The board's decision was contrary to the wishes of the team's selectors, including captain Steve Waugh. Warne was replaced as vice-captain by Adam Gilchrist. That year, however, the ACB awarded Warne the Men's ODI Player of the Year at the Allan Border Medal ceremony.
Warne missed the entire Australian summer of 2000–01 with a finger injury; he battled Stuart MacGill and an in-form Colin Miller to be selected for Australia's tour of India in early 2001. MacGill was ultimately left out of the squad. Warne took 10 wickets over the three-Test series at an average of 50.50; his Indian spin counterpart Harbhajan Singh was the man of the series after taking 32 wickets at an average of 17.03. Australia lost the series 2–1. In the northern summer of 2001, Warne was chosen for his third Ashes tour and took 31 wickets in the five-Test series, which Australia won 4–1. He took three five-wicket hauls in the series. In the final Test at The Oval, Warne took 11 wickets across both innings, including the 400th wicket of his Test career from Alec Stewart. Warne became the sixth person and the first Australian in the history of cricket to reach 400 wickets.
In the 2001–02 Australian summer, Australia played home series against New Zealand and against South Africa. Warne took six wickets in three Tests against New Zealand, and in the third Test in Perth made his career's highest batting score in international cricket. He was caught at mid-wicket off the bowling of Daniel Vettori, which later revealed to be a no-ball while on 99 runs—one run short of a maiden Test century. He took 17 wickets in the three Tests against South Africa—more than any other player—including a five-wicket haul (5/113) in the first innings of the first Test. Warne, with 20 dismissals, was again the leading wicket-taker when Australia played a three-Test series in South Africa in February and March 2002. In February 2002, Ricky Ponting replaced Steve Waugh as captain of Australia's ODI squad. The promotion of Ponting, who is five years younger than Warne, appeared to end any prospect of Warne ever being appointed to the captaincy of Australia.
In October 2002, Australia played a three-Test series against Pakistan in neutral states Sri Lanka and the United Arab Emirates. Warne, who had lost weight over the previous months, took 27 wickets, was named the player of the series, and was man of the match in the first Test with 11 wickets; and the third Test with eight wickets. He returned to Australia for the 2002 – 03 Ashes series against England, starting in November 2002. In the forst Test, he scored 57 with the bat and took 11 wickets in the first three Tests of the series but suffered a shoulder injury in an ODI in December 2002. The injury ruled him out of the remainder of the Ashes series and him in doubt for the World Cup, which would begin in February 2003.
In February 2003, a day before the start of the World Cup, Warne was sent home after a drug test during a one-day series in Australia returned a positive result for a banned diuretic. Warne said he took only one of what he called a "fluid tablet"—the prescription drug Moduretic—which his mother had given him to improve his appearance. A committee established by the ACB found Warne guilty of breaching the board's drug code and imposed a one-year ban from organised cricket.
After having announced he would retire from ODIs after the 2003 World Cup, Warne took the view the ban would lengthen his Test-playing career, although it led him to briefly reconsider his decision to retire from ODIs. Warne was allowed to play in charity matches while serving his one-year ban, a decision that was criticised by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), which Warne criticised for interfering in the matter.
During his suspension, Australia's main free-to-air cricket broadcaster Nine Network hired Warne as a television commentator. During mid-2003, Warne worked for the St Kilda Football Club, an Australian rules football club, in an unpaid consultancy role after the Australian Football League (AFL) banned him from holding an official club position because of his drugs ban.
Warne returned to competitive cricket following his ban in February 2004. In March, in the first Test of a three-Test series against Sri Lanka in Galle, he became the second cricketer after Courtney Walsh to take 500 Test wickets. Warne took five wickets in each innings of the first and second Tests, and a further six wickets in the third Test, and was named the player of the series. on 15 October 2004, during the second Test of Australia's series against India at Chennai, he broke the record for most career wickets in Test cricket. Warne's dismissal of Irfan Pathan, who was caught at slip by Matthew Hayden, saw him overtake his Sri Lankan rival Muttiah Muralitharan with 533 wickets. Muralitharan, who was injured at the time, had taken the record from Courtney Walsh five months earlier. Australia won the series 2–1; it was Australia's first series win in India since 1969. Warne's 14 wickets at an average of 30.07 was an improvement on his previous performances in India, when in six Tests he took 20 wickets at an average of 52 runs each. For his performances in 2004, the ICC named him in the World Test XI.
On 11 August 2005 in the Third Ashes Test at Old Trafford, Warne became the first bowler in history to take 600 Test wickets. In 2005, with 96 wickets, Warne broke the record for the number of wickets in a calendar year. Warne's ferocious competitiveness was a feature of the 2005 Ashes series in which he took 40 wickets at an average of 19.92 and scored 249 runs. Warne shared the player of the series honour with England's Andrew Flintoff. For his performances in 2005, the ICC named Warne in the World Test XI.
Warne began the 2006–07 Ashes series with an indifferent Test performance in Brisbane and a poor performance in the first innings in Adelaide, where he took no wickets. His second-innings performance, however, including bowling Kevin Pietersen around the legs, triggered England's fifth-day collapse and Australia's win. Warne again bowled well in the third Test's second innings, and took the final wicket of Monty Panesar as Australia regained the Ashes.
On 21 December 2006, Warne announced he would retire at the end of the 2006–07 Ashes series at SCG. In his penultimate Test, he took his 700th Test wicket on 26 December 2006 by bowling out English batsman Andrew Strauss at MCG in his final appearance there. This was the first occasion a player had taken 700 Test wickets. The wicket was described as a "classic Warne dismissal", which the crowd of 89,155 gave a standing ovation.
Warne's final Test was held at SCG, same venue as his first 15 years earlier. Warne ended England's first innings by trapping Monty Panesar leg before wicket for a duck and took his 1,000th international wicket. Warne's final Test wicket was that of England's all-rounder Andrew Flintoff, who was stumped by Adam Gilchrist. Warne is one of only two bowlers to have taken more than 1,000 wickets in international cricket, the other being Muttiah Muralitharan. For his performances in 2006, the ICC and Cricinfo named Warne in the World Test XI. Also in 2006, the ACB—which was now renamed Cricket Australia (CA)—awarded Warne the Men's Test Player of the Year at the Allan Border Medal ceremony.
Twenty20 career (2008–2013)
After his retirement from international cricket, Warne was signed as the captain of Rajasthan Royals in the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2008, fetching US$450,000 in the pre-season player auction. Warne led the Royals to victory in the first season of the competition. He continued as captain of the Royals for a further four seasons; the 2011 season was his last with the franchise.
Warne was signed as a player for Melbourne Stars in Australia's inaugural Big Bash League (BBL) in November 2011. The Stars qualified for the semi-finals of the tournament, in which Warne took seven wickets in eight matches at an economy rate of 6.74 runs conceded per over.
In 2013, Warne was fined $4500 and banned for one match for using obscene language, making "inappropriate physical contact with a player or official" Marlon Samuels and "showing serious dissent at an umpire's decision" during a BBL match against Melbourne Renegades. In July 2013, Warne officially retired from all formats of cricket, confirming he would no longer captain Melbourne Stars in the BBL.
In July 2014, Warne captained the Rest of the World side in the Bicentenary Celebration match at Lord's. In February 2018, Rajasthan Royals appointed Warne as their team mentor for the IPL 2018.
From 1999 to 2005, Warne was married to Simone Callahan, with whom he had children Summer, Jackson and Brooke. In 2000, Warne lost the Australian vice-captaincy after it was discovered he was sending sexual text messages to a British nurse while still married to Callahan. He was also involved in an altercation with some teenage boys who took a photograph of him smoking after he had accepted sponsorship from a nicotine patch company in return for quitting smoking. In April 2007, Warne and Callahan were reported to be reuniting two years after their divorce. Five months later, however, Callahan again left Warne after he inadvertently sent her a text message he had intended for another woman.
Following his split from Callahan, Warne dated English actor Elizabeth Hurley. Although their relationship at first seemed short-lived following the disclosure that Warne was sending sexual messages to a married Melbourne businesswoman, the couple created a media frenzy when Hurley moved into Warne's mansion in Brighton, Victoria. In late 2011, Hurley and Warne announced they were engaged, but they had cancelled the engagement by December 2013. Warne later said, "I was more in love with Elizabeth than I'd realised I could be. I miss the love we had. My years with Elizabeth were the happiest of my life."
After retiring from cricket, Warne worked for the Shane Warne Foundation, which assisted seriously ill and underprivileged children. The charity was launched in 2004 and distributed £400,000; its activities included a charity poker tournament. The charity closed in 2017 after running at a financial loss for four of the five previous years. In 2014, the foundation raised $465,000 but spent $550,000.
In August 2021, Warne contracted COVID-19 and was placed on a ventilator "to make sure there were no longer-lasting effects". He said, "I had a thumping headache and I had one day where I had the shivers, but sweating, like when you have the flu", and that Australians would have to learn to live with the virus. Warne was born with complete heterochromia, giving him a blue right eye and a green left eye.