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Shane Warne, Australian cricket legend, dies at 52

Warne’s management company said that he was found unresponsive in his villa in Koh Samui, Thailand.
Australian spinner Shane Warne (C) is ca
Shane Warne is carried off the pitch by his teammates after playing his last test at his home ground in Melbourne in December 2006.William West / AFP via Getty Images file

Shane Warne, legendary former Australian cricket player and television commentator, died of a suspected heart attack on Friday. He was 52.

Warne’s management company MPC Entertainment said that he was found unresponsive in his villa in Koh Samui, Thailand.

“It is with great sadness we advise that Shane Keith Warne passed away of a suspected heart attack,” MPC said in a statement. “Despite the best efforts of medical staff, he could not be revived. The family requests privacy at this time and will provide further details in due course.”

Image: FILE PHOTO: Australia's Warne bowls to England's Hoggard during the second Ashes test in Birmingham.
Shane Warne was widely considered to be one of the greatest bowlers in cricketing history.Ian Hodgson / Reuters file

The leg spin bowler took 708 wickets in test cricket, which was was the record for the most wickets taken by any bowler, until it was broken by Sri Lanka’s Muttiah Muralitharan.

In 2000, Warne 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.

After retiring as a player, Warne became a well known commentator on Sky Sports, ESPN, Channel 9, Fox Sports and India’s Disney-owned Star TV.

Warne debuted for Australia in test cricket in 1992 against India and played his last test versus England in 2007 after a 5-0 series victory. During the course of his long and distinguished career, he also took 293 wickets in one day internationals. He also captained Australia in some one day internationals. He was a member of the Australian team that won the 1999 World Cup.

Warne also played Australian domestic cricket for his home state Victoria, and English domestic cricket for Hampshire, where he was captain for three seasons, from 2005 to 2007. He retired from international cricket in January 2007, at the end of Australia’s 5-0 Ashes series victory over England.

In 2010 he got engaged to English actress Liz Hurley, before the pair eventually split in 2013. 

Elizabeth Hurley - Launches Her New Bed Linen Collection
Shane Warne and Elizabeth Hurley in May 2012, in London.Dave J Hogan / Getty Images file

After he retired from international cricket, Warne took up the role of captain and coach of the Rajasthan Royals T-20 team and led them to victory in the first edition of the Indian Premier League cricket tournament.

Warne also had a deal with 888 Poker to represent them at poker tournaments around the world.

In 2018, Warne released his autobiography “No Spin.”

Tributes poured in for Warne.

U.K. media personality Piers Morgan tweeted that he was “absolutely devastated” to hear of his friend’s death.

“He was a genius cricketer, a supreme entertainer, a fantastic bloke and a great loyal friend for many years,” he said. “Just gutting news. RIP Warnie, I loved every minute in your company.”