Ricky Ponting admits he has to turn the TV down when he hears Shane Warne’s voice


The void left by Shane Warne’s premature death is such that Ricky Ponting has to turn down the TV whenever he hears his late friend’s voice. 

The spin king was elevated to Legend status in the Sport Australia Hall of Fame on Thursday and Ponting voiced an emotional tribute to his former teammate, who died in March at the age of 52 while on holiday in Thailand.

‘Since his passing, I don’t know if you’ve been the same at home, but if there’s been any replays of cricket games on, I’ve had to turn it down,’ Ponting said to Matthew Hayden on Channel 7.

Ricky Ponting (right) paid an emotional tribute to the late Shane Warne (left)

‘You can hear his voice somewhere, and then you go and find where it is in the house and you have to turn it down.

‘We all notice the loss most when the summer starts here in Australia. 

‘When he’s not here and when you’re not hearing the bold predictions, and you’re not hearing his genius in the commentary box.’

Warne would have been a regular guest in the commentary box this summer for the T20 World Cup, the ODI series against England and the Test series against the West Indies and South Africa.

The former Australian captain spoke for three minutes on Channel 7 ahead of Warne's elevation to Legend status in the Sport Australia Hall of Fame

The former Australian captain spoke for three minutes on Channel 7 ahead of Warne’s elevation to Legend status in the Sport Australia Hall of Fame

But Ponting joked the late spin great would be missed far beyond the confines of a commentary box. 

‘The fact we don’t get to see him on the golf course and get some money out of him as well through the course of the summer,’ he quipped to Hayden.

[He’s] Very sadly missed.

In the three-minute video, Ponting described Warne as ‘the greatest cricketer of the modern era’ and the man who ‘single-handedly inspired a generation of boys and girls all around the world’ to take up cricket.

Ponting and Warne celebrate winning the 2005-06 Ashes after whitewashing England. They won four  of the five Ashes series they played together

Ponting and Warne celebrate winning the 2005-06 Ashes after whitewashing England. They won four  of the five Ashes series they played together 

Ponting described the late spin king as the 'greatest ever spin bowler' to play the game

Ponting described the late spin king as the ‘greatest ever spin bowler’ to play the game

Warne would have been a regular in the commentary box this summer in Australia

Warne would have been a regular in the commentary box this summer in Australia  

RICKY PONTING’S SHANE WARNE TRIBUTE 

 Shane Keith Warne. For me, the greatest ever spin bowler to have played the game of cricket. In fact, for me, he is clearly the greatest cricketer of the modern era.

For the 15 years that he represented Australia, I, like you, witnessed something very special. A global superstar that changed our game forever. He single-handedly inspired a generation of boys and girls all around the world who wanted to be like Shane Warne. Wanting to bowl spin and dominate batters and games alike. I don’t know what it was, but Shane and I hit it off from our very first introduction. In 1992 at the Cricket Academy in Adelaide. We became instant mates. He showed me the ropes, gave me my nickname that has stuck with me ever since.

I miss those chats so much. Fitting that one of my fondest memories playing with Warnie was our 2006 Ashes Test win back in Adelaide. The game they said we couldn’t win. But in England’s second innings, it was time for the world to see absolute brilliance that was Shane Warne. It was time to sit back and watch The King on his stage.

He bowled 32 of the most extraordinary overs, taking 4-49 in a performance that set up our eventual win. When reflecting on a few words and statements that capture my feelings for my 30-year mateship with Warnie, I don’t think I have ever had so many words and emotions come into my mind all at once.

The ultimate competitor. Star power. Never beaten. Reliable. Accepting and caring. Infectious smile. The life of the party. Larrikin. Generous beyond belief. His achievements, passion and knowledge of the game was something to behold. He was a superstar, a game-changer, a leader, an innovator and, above all, a bloody good bloke. Warnie, there will never be another like you.

Man, myth and now legend. I love you, mate.

He recalls the extraordinary win against England in Adelaide during the 2005-06 Ashes series as one of his fondest memories of his former teammate.

With Australia 1-0 up in the series after winning in Brisbane, England declared on 6-551 in the first innings. The Aussies replied with 513, before bundling England out for a mere 129 as Warne too 4-49 in 32 overs, setting up the platform for an improbable six-wicket win.

‘It was time to sit back and watch The King on his stage,’ Ponting said of Warne’s performance.

‘He bowled 32 of the most extraordinary overs.’

Warne and Ponting were part of the Australia squad that won the 1999 Cricket World Cup and won five of the six Ashes series they played together. 

Ponting hailed his former teammate as the ‘ultimate competitor’, who was ‘never beaten’.

He added: ‘His achievements, passion and knowledge of the game was something to behold. He was a superstar, a game-changer 

Warne and Ponting first met in 1992 at the Cricket Academy in Adelaide and ‘hit it off from our very first introduction’, becoming close friends.

‘He showed me the ropes, gave me my nickname that has stuck with me ever since,’ the former Aussie captain said in the tribute.

‘I miss those chats so much.’ 

The tribute ended with Ponting putting down the microphone, chocking back the tears.

‘I got through it pretty good, made my way through,’ Ponting told Hadyen, who played alongside him and Warne in the all-conquering Aussie side that dominated across different formats for over a decade.

‘It was all on autocue, I could see the end on the bottom of the page.

‘I was going through it and it got down to the bottom bit and that’s when I lost it a little bit there. I could go on for another 10 or 15 minutes.’

Warne’s death came just hours after Rod Marsh passed away and two months before Andrew Symonds, who also played with Warne, Ponting and Hayden, died in a car crash. 

Ponting himself suffered a health scare last week, when he had to abruptly leave Channel 7’s commentary position during the first Test between Australia and the West Indies in Perth and was rushed to hospital after complaining of chest pains. 

The emotion of losing such close friends in such a short time was ‘raw’, Hayden said, as he reflected on an incredibly said years for Australian cricket.  

‘We can rejoice in the fact that their spirit lives on in our great game,’ he said.

‘In the spirit of cricket.’ 



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