If you look around at the careers of even the best cricketers in the modern era, you will definitely find certain dry or barren patches where they struggle to touch their very best. But some rare men don’t fall in this category whole throughout their careers in sports and stay on top of their game for as long as they have vigour in their limbs. Shane Keith Warne is one of that rare breed of cricketers who has been giving something novel and inspiring to the game, to the lovers of the game, and to the students of the game from last fifteen years as prolifically as any other man can do.
Shane Warne is not just a cricketer. He is in himself a complete role model for all young cricketers for how to play the game to make it more entertaining, competitive, intense and tough for the opponents. His every gesture in the field shows his hunger, passion and will to reach for the best. His pauses between overs, his oohs and aahs after each and every vociferous turned down appeals, his lengthy discussions with his skipper or wicket-keepers are lessons about how to play with the nerves of the man on strike. His power to create cobwebs in the minds of even the best of our time discriminate him from other great bowlers of past few years.
Some say that it is his versatility that makes him what he is today. Some say that it is his unbelievable skill to give a ball tweak that makes him so lethal. Some say that it is his control to keep even the most attacking batsmen under check that places him on top of the world. But the most striking feature about this charismatic cricketer is his attitude. He loves playing this game. He enjoys big stages and rarely missed such chances to make an impact in his long career. He loves orchestrating things through any possible mean.
How many cricketers you find presently who dictate terms whenever they come out to bat or bowl? Very few. Shane Warne is certainly one of those few. You may not like this but in my opinion he is the most accomplished actor of the game. Great actors have habit of utilizing everything in their script, stage and surroundings to make their performance much more powerful and vocal. Warne is master of this trait. He never shies from using every available help to dislodge his rivals. Bringing his fielders in the game, involving his crowd support to his favour, playing with words to shatter confidence of batsmen and on top of all that his facial and body gestures to say look how close I was of picking up you again?. This entire exhibition of subtle variations make batsmen feel that there must be something horribly wrong the way I am dealing with this stuff. Things start looking lot closer than they usually are. But that is the secret of his success. He does not want to do it half-heartedly whether it is his first over of the day or the last of the day.
It is certainly not that I am saying that he is not as good a cricketer as we know he is. He is magician with the cricket ball, but that is not all he has. He has several other things to offer to the game as well. Persona, dignity and enjoyment about his game are few to name.
He never feels content with the tag of being good. He wants to be the best or to some extent complete bowler. And this quality makes him probably the most charismatic, intense, imaginative and nerve-rattling cricketer of our time. This attitude certainly earns him the title of “The complete bowler of our time”.