(Reuters) – Following are reactions to the death of Australian Shane Warne, one of the finest leg-spin bowlers of all time.
Warne’s death at 52 came hours after another former Australian cricket great and former wicketkeeper Rod Marsh died aged 74.
CRICKET AUSTRALIA CEO NICK HOCKLEY
“Shane was one of the most talented and charismatic cricketers we have ever witnessed. He loved cricket, had an extraordinarily astute understanding of the game and his influence and legacy will last for as long as it is played.”
AUSTRALIA CAPTAIN PAT CUMMINS
“Shane was a once-in-a-century cricketer and his achievements will stand for all time, but apart from the wickets he took and the games he helped Australia win, what he did was draw so many people to the sport.
“So many of us in the playing group grew up idolising him and fell in love with this great sport as a result, while many of our support staff either played with him or against him.
“It has been a terrible couple of days for Australian cricket with the passing of Rod Marsh and now Shane.”
ICC CHIEF EXECUTIVE GEOFF ALLARDICE
“He was a true legend of the game, who changed the landscape of cricket by reviving the art of leg-spin.
“His larger-than-life personality, extraordinary skill and immense cricketing intellect ensured fans were glued to their seats whenever he was involved in a game.
“He also established a successful career in the commentary box, where his insightful and forthright views on the game made him one of the first-choice commentators for broadcasters in most cricketing countries.”
MARYLEBONE CRICKET CLUB
“MCC is deeply shocked and saddened to learn of the death of Honorary Life Member and World Cricket committee member, Shane Warne. Shane was one of the finest cricketers ever to have played the game.”
INDIAN PREMIER LEAGUE FOUNDER LALIT MODI
“I am in complete shock, we spoke yesterday. You were my pillar and strength that pushed me to build IPL.
“I am totally shaken by this and I pray that god gives all the strength to his family to cope with this tremendous loss. I will truly miss him. May your soul rest in peace my bro.”
RAJASTHAN ROYALS, THE IPL TEAM WARNE LED TO THE 2008 TITLE
“Shane Warne. The name stands for magic. Our first Royal; a man who made us believe that impossible is just a myth. A leader who walked the walk, talked the talk, and turned underdogs into champions. A mentor who turned everything he touched into gold.
“We don’t have the words to express what we truly feel at the moment, but what we know is that the world is poorer today, as it will now exist without his smile, his brilliance, and his attitude to live life to its fullest.
“We’re completely heartbroken, as are millions of cricket fans all around the world. Warnie, you’re forever going to be our captain, leader, Royal. Rest in peace, legend.”
INDIA GREAT SACHIN TENDULKAR
“Will miss you Warnie. There was never a dull moment with you around, on or off the field. Will always treasure our on field duels & off field banter. You always had a special place for India & Indians had a special place for you.
“Gone too young!”
EX-AUSTRALIA WICKETKEEPER ADAM GILCHRIST
“Numb. The highlight of my cricketing career was to keep wicket to Warnie. Best seat in the house to watch the maestro at work.”
WEST INDIES GREAT BRIAN LARA
“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!”
INDIA BATSMAN VIRAT KOHLI
“Life is so fickle and unpredictable. I cannot process the passing of this great of our sport and also a person I got to know off the field. RIP #goat. Greatest to turn the cricket ball.”
AUSTRALIA BATSMAN DAVID WARNER
“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 cannot believe it.”
FORMER SOUTH AFRICA ALL-ROUNDER JACQUES KALLIS
“He was one of the greatest competitors. Played hard on field and was one of the first to have a beer with you after. Was always a pleasure and challenge playing against him. More importantly loved his kids endlessly. One of cricket’s greats.”
INDIAN CRICKET BOARD (BCCI)
“The global cricketing community is poorer today with the passing away of Australian great Shane Warne. The BCCI mourns the loss of the champion cricketer who enriched the game with his craft.”
ENGLAND CAPTAIN JOE ROOT
“My experience of Shane was someone that also loved the game of cricket. He was always a joy to be around and gave so much energy to the sport.
“As a kid growing up, he was a massive idol of mine. Someone you wanted to emulate the way he could win a game on his own, his skill level was incredible. To have had the opportunity to get to know him a little bit it was deeply saddening to hear the news.”
FORMER PAKISTAN CAPTAIN SHAHID AFRIDI
“The game of cricket has lost what I consider a university of leg-spin bowling today. I was inspired by his bowling from the start of my career and it was always a privilege to play against him.”
PAKISTAN BOWLER SHADAB KHAN
“To the greatest legspinner of all time = Shane Warne. The reason I started bowling legspin. Rest in power. There will be none like you. Few people have the power to inspire generations, you are the reason so many of us started bowling legspin.”
FORMER INDIA BATSMAN VIRENDER SEHWAG
“One of the greatest spinners, the man who made spin cool, superstar Shane Warne is no more. Life is very fragile, but this is very difficult to fathom.”
WEST INDIES GREAT VIV RICHARDS
“Unbelievable. I am shocked to the core. This can’t be true… There are no words to describe what I feel right now. A huge loss for cricket.”
INDIA CAPTAIN ROHIT SHARMA
“I’m truly lost for words here, this is extremely sad. An absolute legend and champion of our game has left us.”
PAKISTAN CAPTAIN BABAR AZAM
“Find it hard to believe. Such a devastating loss for the cricket world. He literally inspired generations with his magical leg spin. You’ll forever be missed.”
(Compiled by Manasi Pathak and Rohith Nair in Bengaluru; Editing by Christian Radnedge/Toby Davis/Ken Ferris)