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Will Warne really quit cricket?

Spinner Shane Warne is reportedly holding secret talks with Aussie selectors in a bid to make a comeback in his national side for the shorter version of the game.

india Updated: Jan 09, 2006 20:15 IST
Asian News International
Asian News International

The world's highest Test wicket taker Shane Warne, who had to take premature retirement from one-day cricket around three years ago following positive drug tests, is reportedly holding secret talks with Aussie selectors in a bid to make a comeback in his national side for the shorter version of the game.

His objective seems to be to represent Australia once again in next World Cup, scheduled take place in West Indies in 2007.

The leggie wants the selectors to make sure his berth in the World Cup squad before he finally announces his come back, The Australian quoted Ricky Ponting as saying in his Ashes Diary. Hinting at the possibilities of including the bowler in the World Cup squad, the skipper further said that during the recently held two ODIs for tsunami relief, Warne showed his mettle and willingness to once again don the green cap in ODIs.

"During the tsunami match in Melbourne in January (2005) he revelled in a return to the day-night atmosphere of coloured clothing, and I think it got his competitive juices flowing again. The trouble is I do not think he will make himself available unless he gets an assurance from the selectors that they will pick him; he will not want to go to the trouble and possible embarrassment of announcing his availability only to be overlooked," the paper quoted Ponting as saying.

According to the paper, Warne and his managers have been holding private talks with Australia selection chairman Trevor Hohns to explore the possibility of his inclusion in the team for the next year's World Cup. Hohns believes that limited-overs cricket's super sub rule may be a way for Shane Warne to make a return, but stressed that any comeback must be unconditional, it added

"At the moment he's still retired and we can't guarantee that we'll pick him. Obviously, if he makes himself available it just can't be for the World Cup. We've had a couple of chats about it and it's been very, very general, nothing specific at all. He's got to make himself available before the World Cup because we're trying to put together a squad with a view to the World Cup. Last-minute inclusions are a little bit difficult," Hohns reportedly said on Sunday.

Agreeing that the super sub rule, to be used in Australia's annual VB Series for the first time this summer, might make it a more attractive option for Warne to return to limited-overs cricket, Hohns said: “The super-sub rule, if that stays in, could be an advantage to these players who are ageing a little bit. At the same time their performances have to warrant them being included.”

The new rule would allow Warne to field at slip during the early overs, bowl his 10 overs and be subbed out before the game reached its frantic conclusion, thus reducing the toll that hectic ground fielding in the shortened format would have on his body, said the paper.

First Published: Jan 09, 2006 20:15 IST