Legendary Australian Shane Warne has opened up about how he gave thoughts to retirement before he received a 12-month ban from cricket in 2003. Ahead of the World Cup 2003 in South Africa, the leg-spinner was tested positive in a drug test. This led to the Cricket Australia (formerly Australian Cricket Board) banning him from the game for one year.
During this period, Warne was not allowed to practice at the board’s facilities or any other government-owned ones. The leg-spinner admitted that the ban actually came as a much-needed break for him.
During an interaction with Fox Cricket, the ex-Aussie cricketer revealed how he was restricted from training. “It was a tough one because the government obviously funds Cricket Australia. I was told by Cricket Australia that I could not train at any facility at all, whether it was club cricket, a normal cricket ground, anything,” said the 50-year-old during a show named “A Week With Warnie.”
Shane Warne had started to doubt himself
The Australian veteran said that he had started to have doubts about his game. He revealed he wasn’t feeling alright with how things were before the ban. “I started to think am I going to give the game away? I got pretty low with things. Pretty disappointed. I’ve done so much in the game. I’m not happy with everything the way it was, so that break did me good,” Warne added.
Once he returned from a family trip to Spain, the leg-spinner started to train again. At this time, he would play against his brother and actor Glenn Robbins. The bowler was banned from playing or practising against any professional batsman.
“A mate of a mate had an indoor cricket school in the middle of Woop Woop, Dandenong maybe. It opened up early at 6 am and I’d bowl to my brother (and) Glenn Robins. I wasn’t allowed to bowl to anyone (professional). I only did that for a couple of weeks before going on tour, so I basically did not bowl for a year,” he further said.
After the ban ended, Shane Warne returned to Australia’s Test team in quite a heroic fashion. The leggie won the Man of the Series award in the Test series in Sri Lanka in 2004 which the visitors won by 3-0. Warne played Test cricket until early 2007 and ended with 708 wickets to his name.
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