Cricket Australia, on Saturday, has announced that the Southern Stand at the Melbourne Cricket Ground will be renamed as S.K. Warne Stand as a tribute to the legendary spinner who passed away on Friday. Warne died of a suspected heart attack aged just 52. The saddening news put the whole world in shock as on the same day Australia also lost their legendary wicketkeeper Rod Marsh.
“The Great Southern Stand at the MCG will be renamed the S.K. Warne Stand in a permanent tribute to The King,” Cricket Australia posted on Twitter.
A special tribute for the one and only Shane Warne. pic.twitter.com/0b0LJ3ilgM
— cricket.com.au (@cricketcomau) March 5, 2022
Warne enjoyed several cricketing feats at his home ground including the historic 700th Test wicket.
Australia women’s cricket team also took for a minute of silence and don black armbands in memory of Shane Warne and Rod Marsh ahead of their ODI World Cup clash against England.
Following his international retirement, Warne continued to star on the T20 franchise circuit, appearing for Rajasthan Royals in the Indian Premier League and his home town Melbourne Stars in Australia’s Big Bash League. He guided Rajasthan Royals to their maiden IPL title in the inaugural season to create history.
He played 145 Tests in total over a 15-year career, taking 708 wickets, and was also a useful lower-order batsman, with a highest Test score of 99.
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Prime Minister Scott Morrison on Saturday said Australians were “bewildered” by a “sad and sudden loss” of Warne, and announced the cricketing hero would receive a state funeral.
“He was one of our nation’s greatest characters,” Morrison said, marking the 52-year-old’s death.
Praising him as inspiration to backyard cricketers across the country, Morrison described a larger-than-life character who lit up each Australian summer.
“His humour, his passion, his irreverence, his approachability ensured he was loved by all.”
In recognition of Warne’s “national achievements his family will be offered a state funeral,” Morrison said in a statement.
“This will be done in consultation with the Warne family,” he said, promising to “ensure we honour Shane’s passing and memory.”