Thai forensic investigators examine a hotel room after the sudden death of a former cricketer

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“The family has requested confidentiality at this stage,” Mr Neophitou said after meeting with police.

“We really want to bring Shane home. That’s all we want to do.

Another man, staying at the resort but not a member of Warne’s group, also spoke to police.

Australia’s Ambassador to Thailand, Allan McKinnon, is also at Bophut Police Station. Other DFAT officials travel to Koh Samui to provide assistance to people who were traveling with Warne. Mr Erskine said the cricket champion is due to leave the Southeast Asian nation early next week after staying on Koh Samui for five days.

Mr Erskine said Warne’s children, Brooke, Summer and Jackson, were “shattered” by the news of their father’s death. Warne’s father, Keith, visited his grandchildren in the early hours of Saturday morning to comfort them after the news broke.

Warne – who in 1993 threw ‘the ball of the century’ on his first cricket Test ball on English soil – won his famous 700th wicket at the MCG in front of his home fans, having grown up in Melbourne. He won 708 Test wickets in a career 145 Test, a record for any Australian and second in the world behind Sri Lanka’s Muttiah Muralitharan, who said the world cricketing fraternity was in shock.

Prime Minister Scott Morrison said Warne was “one of the few who can approach the extraordinary achievements of the great Don Bradman” in Australian cricket. But he was also a giant of the country’s life and history, a “one of a kind” who brought magic to Australian summers.

“Shane was one of the greatest figures in our country,” Mr Morrison said. “His humor, his passion, his irreverence, his approachability made him loved by all. Australians loved him. We all did.

Opposition Leader Anthony Albanese said Warne was a “phenomenal sportsman” and a legend whose extraordinary innings ended far too soon.

“When he had the ball in his hand he was a magician,” he said. “He was a larrikin and an artist, and he changed the game he loved in the process. Seeing him in action was just one of the purest joys the sport had to offer.

Warne split his time between Australia and the UK, befriending many English celebrities, including singer Ed Sheeran, who said he was “absolutely disgusted” by the loss of his “incredible friend”.

Rolling Stones frontman and cricket fan Mick Jagger said he was “so saddened” by Warne’s sudden death. “He brought such joy to the game and was the greatest spin pitcher of all time,” Jagger tweeted.

The front page of a British tabloid The star of the day hailed “THE GREATEST” while the final pages of the British Guardian called Warne “one of the greatest cricketers of all time, who matched his almost unearthly genius with a carefree air of a playing child”.

The first UK pages of the death of cricketer Shane WarneCredit:the Internet

Warne’s family were offered a state funeral by the Federal Government, which Mr Morrison said would be arranged in consultation with Cricket Australia and the Victorian Government. State Premier Daniel Andrews announced that the MCG’s Great Southern Stand would be renamed SK Warne Stand as “a permanent tribute to an incredible Victorian”.

Just hours before his death, Warne had paid tribute to fellow cricketing great Rod Marsh, who died in Adelaide earlier on Friday. Warne had also posted in recent days that he was in peak physical condition, or “operation shred” in his own words.

Mr Erskine said Warne was relaxing on holiday while getting fitter and the cricketer had not been drinking despite the public perception that he liked alcohol.

“Everyone thinks he’s a big drunk but he’s not a big drunk at all. I sent him a case of wine, 10 years later it’s still there. He doesn’t drink, hasn’t never done drugs, ever. He hated drugs, so nothing untoward,” Mr. Erskine said.

“He was going to do the things he likes to do… play in a poker competition or two, play a lot of golf, be with his kids, that was about it; [to] have time for himself.

The Indian cricket team observed a minute’s silence before the start of the match on the second day of the first Test against Sri Lanka to pay tribute to Warne and Marsh, while the women’s cricket teams of Australia and England held a minute’s silence before a match. in New Zealand on Saturday.

In Melbourne, cricket fans traveled from Victoria to visit Warne’s statue outside the MCG and pay their respects on Saturday.

Harry Morrow left a can of VB, a meat pie and a pack of cigarettes at Warne’s feet in memory of the man he said ‘was an Australian cricketer’. Spending a lot of time in the UK as a child, Mr Morrow said his fondest memories were watching Warne “rip the England cricket team to shreds”.

“There was a kind of smug satisfaction watching him go out – you’d be like ‘here’s the secret weapon, he’s going to clean them,’ and he always has,” he said.

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Two of Warne’s teammates in a Test team that dominated world cricket, captain Ricky Ponting and bowler Glenn McGrath, expressed their grief. Batting legend Ponting said he met Warne at a cricket academy when Ponting was 15, where Warne gave him his nickname “Punter”.

“Hard to put this into words,” Ponting wrote on Twitter. “The greatest bowler I have ever bowled with or against. RIP King.

McGrath said Warne had a special ability to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat on the cricket pitch, and said he had that attitude off the pitch.

“It seemed like there was never a dull moment…Rest in peace my good friend, there will never be someone like you again,” McGrath wrote.

Former Australian wicketkeeper Ian Healy said he was devastated by the death but was not surprised his former team-mate died young. Warne’s weight fluctuated during his career; he said that in 2019 he lost 14 kilograms after weighing around 98 kilograms.

“An early death didn’t surprise me for Warnie,” Healy told Nine’s Today To display. “He didn’t take good care of his body. He yo-yoed up and down.

“He didn’t wear a lot of sunscreen. I thought it would become skin issues for him over time, but not at 52. And it would have been full of beans until the end, I bet.

Muralitharan, who holds the all-time record for Test wickets taken, said the cricketing world was in shock. “I was asking people if it was real or if it was fake news,” he told Fox Cricket.

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