Come Jan 6th, 2007 and one of the most cherished bowler would have hanged his boots for the last time and cricket would be poorer by his absence. He is the bowler who brought to the speed-crazy public, the lost art of leg spin bowling. Such is the status enjoyed by this man from
Cricket connoisseurs won’t forget the 1992 Ashes series when Shane announced his arrival in world cricket by bowling Mike Gatting out. This has been touted as the ball of the century by critics and fans alike, and rightly so.
In a career spanning 16 years, he has coaxed batsmen with his various guiles into giving their scalps, 699 of them (so far) in tests and 293 in the ODIs. He has been a consistent campaigner picking wickets against the best of the teams all over the cricket playing world. His moment of glory came when he, along with Sachin Tendulkar was invited to a tea party with the greatest batsman ever to have walked the turf, Sir Don Bradman in 1998.
He has always been the man, any captain would turn to whenever the situation demands. Few batsmen have been able to dominate him in the manner in which Brian Lara and Sachin Tendulkar have done.
But he has not always been the role model whom the parents would like their kids to emulate. He has been christened the BAD BOY in more than one occasion, been involved in match fixing even before the 1999 match fixing saga; stared in a number of sexapades and has also been found guilty of taking performance enhancing drugs which made him miss ICC World Cup 2003.
But all in all, he has been a good ambassador for the game of cricket. As I started this topic, I reiterate.. The ball will never spin the same!
Good Bye.. Shane!