Gone too Soon: A Flood of Emotional Tributes for Shane Warne
Image Courtesy: Sporting News
New Delhi: Shane Warne's sudden death hasn't just trigger an outpouring of emotional tributes in the cricketing world but athletes from other sports and popular personalities from all walks of life have joined in to mourn the maverick spinner, whose vivacious personality made him a fan favourite all over the world.
From British Prime Minister Boris Johnson to Hollywood actors Russell Crowe and Hugh Jackman, tributes came in for the enigmatic spinner who died of a suspected heart attack on Friday.
His teammates continued to remember the cherishable moments they shared with him.
"Hard to put this into words. I first met him when I was 15 at the Academy. He gave me my nickname. We were teammates for more than a decade, riding all the highs and lows together," former Australia captain Ricky Ponting wrote on his Twitter page.
"Through it all he was someone you could always count on, someone who loved his family... someone who would be there for you when you needed him and always put his mates first. The greatest bowler I ever played with or against.
"RIP King. My thoughts are with Keith, Bridgette, Jason, Brooke, Jackson and Summer,” he added.
Another iconic former teammate Glenn McHGrath always believed that nothng could ever happen to the spin wizard given his larger than life persona.
"I thought nothing could ever happen to him, He lived more in his life than most people would live in 20," McGrath wrote.
"He has had a turbulent life but a very full life . . . you just felt, I certainly did, he would go on forever," another former Australia skipper Mark Taylor said.
The great Brian Lara and Vivian Richards were in disbelief, like many others, after the loss of the "Greatest Sportsman of All Time."
"Heartbroken And speechless at the moment. I literally don’t know how to sum up this situation. My friend is gone!! We have lost one of the Greatest Sportsmen of all time!! My condolences goes out to his family. RIP Warnie!! You will be missed," Lara said.
"Unbelievable. I am shocked to the core. This can’t be true... Rest In Peace, @ShaneWarne. There are no words to describe what I feel right now. A huge loss for cricket," Richards wrote on Twitter.
Former England captain Michael Vaughan wrote a heartfelt tribute for the Australian, who was once his fiercest rival.
"Shane was the greatest ever cricketer but more than that his character lit up every dressing room, comm box, bar, golf club & friendship group .. his energy & positivity was beyond anyone I have ever known .. he was loyal beyond loyal.
"Everyone wanted to be around him but ultimately he was just a normal guy who could do incredible things," Vaughan wrote on Instagram.
An iconic name in international cricket, Warne, since making his debut in 1992, played 145 Tests for Australia, picking up 708 wickets with his eye-catching leg-spin. In his 194 ODI appearances, Warne snared 293 scalps.
"I've lost a great friend on and off the playing field. “One of the best” my thoughts are with Jackson Summer & Brooke ... RIP Warnster, " England great Ian Botham on Twitter.
Warne passed away on a day when Australian cricket was already in mourning after the death of wicket-keeping legend Rodney Marsh.
Star opener David Warner wrote, "Two legends of our game have left us too soon. I'm lost for words, and this is extremely sad. My thoughts and prayers go out to the Marsh and Warne family. I just can not believe it. #rip, you will both be missed."
India batter Virat Kohli, playing his landmark 100th test in Mohali, recalled Warne's flamboyant persona and the passion he exuded.
"Got the news last night, out of nowhere. Passing at the age of 52 is totally unexpected, went far too early.
"I stand here with disbelief and shock because I got to know him off the field as well, the persona and charisma he brought to every conversation from that I could understand what he brought on the field as well.
"Just an honest man upfront, passionate, spoke so clearly, knew exactly what he was saying. Lived life king size. Just very grateful to have known him.
"For me, he is the greatest spinner to have played the game. He'll surely be missed. My deepest condolence to his family, parent children. they have all our support," Kohli said in a vedio posted by BCCI.
England Test skipper Joe Root said he idolised Warne growing up.
"It's shocked us all in the dressing room. My experiences with Shane were someone that absolutely loved the game of cricket, was always a joy to be around, gave so much energy to the sport.
"As a kid growing up, was a massive idol of mine, someone you wanted to emulate ... the way he won a game on his own, his skill levels incredible," Root said in a video posted by England Cricket.
"Australian Legend. @rajasthanroyals Legend. Was an honour to know you and work with you. This man is a LEGEND,” wrote England all-rounder Ben Stokes on Twitter.
Former Australian Prime Minister Kevein Ruud and current British PM Johnson also paid rich tributes to the legend.
"Larger than life. A living legend. Far too young. Both cricket and the country so much poorer for his passing. May you Rest In Peace Warnie. The country mourns his passing," Rudd wrote.
"Totally shocked and saddened to hear about Shane Warne - a cricketing genius and one of the nicest guys you could meet, who also did a lot to help disadvantaged kids into sport," Johnson said.
Hollywood actors Crowe and Jackman rued the loss of a loyal friend and once in a generation talent.
"Genius player. Grand company. Loyal friend," Crowe tweeted.
Jackman said he is still processing that his good friend would no longer be around.
"Like you all I am in shock to wake to the news that @ShaneWarne
had passed away. I'm grateful to have known him, and to have witnessed his once in a generation talent.
"My heartfelt sympathies to his family and close friends at this incredibly difficult time. Rest well Shane," Jackman wrote.
Indian actor Priety Zinta, who is also an IPL team owner, recalled her interactions with the legend during the league.
"So sad to hear that Shane Warne is no more. He was a magician on the field & such a charismatic & flamboyant personality off the field.I learnt so much about cricket from him every time I met him during the IPL & laughed a lot. He was an inspiration to so many all over the world," Bollywood actor and Punjab Kings co-owner Preity Zinta wrote.
Rolling Stones lead singer Mick Jagger, Liverpool Great Kenny Dalgish and former Chelsea skipper John Terry also mourned the loss of the icon.
"He brought such joy to the game and was the greatest spin bowler ever," Jagger said.
"I'll be raising a glass to Shane Warne in memory of time we have spent together. 52 years of age is nothing at all. Today we have lost an iconic figure of cricket," Dalglish tweeted.
"RIP Shane Warne Devastating News. My condolences and love are with your friends and family," wrote Terry.
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