‘Was keen to keep him under wraps’ - Allan Border on how he handled Shane Warne in 1993 Ashes series
Speaking about his unwavering faith in Warne’s abilities, Border said that he believed in the leg-spinner and did everything to keep him under wraps ahead of the Test matches.Updated: Jun 04, 2020 14:41 IST
In the summer of 1993, Allan Border led Australia to their third straight Ashes series triumph and second consecutive on English soil. It was the beginning of a victorious run that would last until England won the memorable 2005 series.
Border’s Australia had thrashed England 4-0 in 1989, in their last tour of the British isles. Needless to say when Australia came calling again in 1993, the English were looking to get the ‘urn’ back. The 93 series would go on to become the beginning of a great success story as Shane Warne bamboozled the English batsmen to help Australia win 4-1. It all started on this day, 27 years ago, as Warne bowled the ‘ball of the century’ to dismiss Mike Gatting.
Speaking about his unwavering faith in Warne’s abilities, Border said that he believed in the leg-spinner and did everything to keep him under wraps ahead of the Test matches.
“We didn’t want to show England anything, that we had this kid up our who we suspected could be the real deal,” Border was quoted as saying by foxsports.com.au. “I was really excited about what I was seeing and what he potentially could bring to the table so I was keen to keep him under wraps,” he added.
Graeme Hick was the big English hope and he belted Warne for runs in a tour match. Border recalled telling Warne to save his tricks for the Test matches.
“He (Hick) was a very good player of spin and Warnie got a bit frustrated, he was getting belted out of the ground thinking ‘stuff this, I’m getting towelled up here,’” Border recalled. “I said ‘it doesn’t matter, this is just about you getting some rhythm. Him thinking you can’t bowl works in our favour, show him nothing.”
Border also said that at first he didn’t realise how good the delivery that got Gatting out was.
“I was just happy Mike Gatting was out to the first ball from Warne. When we got into the huddle everyone was like ‘gee AB, that was a pretty special delivery’, I’m sort of ‘yeah yeah yeah, whoop-de-doo’.
“Then I saw the replay and went ‘wow’,” Border said.