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Shane Warne slammed Ricky Ponting and John Buchanan
By Sandy - Oct 8, 2018 3:12 am
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In his new autobiography – No Spin – the legendary Australian leg-spinner Shane Warne slammed the former Australian skipper Ricky Ponting for his decision in the famous Edgbaston Test in 2005 Ashes Series. Warne also hit out then Australian head coach John Buchanan for questioning players’ attitude to win the Test match.

Ricky Ponting and John Buchanan

While the 2005 Ashes Series in England is known one of the best ever Test series in history, the Edgbaston Test was surely the best one of that series as the cricket world observed a high drama and thrilling finish. Coming to the second Test of the series at Edgbaston with the 1-0 lead after a 239-run victory in the first Test at Lord’s, Australia lost the game against the hosts by 2 runs and the series were levelled by 1-1.

Ricky Ponting and Shane Warne

Also read: Shane Warne Reveals Details Of Threesome Encounter

Chasing down 282 runs in the fourth innings, Australia once went down to 175/8 but the lower order batsmen – Shane Warne (42), Brett Lee (43*) and Michael Kasprowicz (20) – provided the heroic fights and almost snatched an unforgettable victory, which was ultimately failed just by a tiny margin.

At the beginning of that Test match, Australian captain Ricky Ponting decided to field first after winning the toss and Warne has criticised that decision in the new autobiography. Warne believes that decision set the tone for England in that series, which they ultimately grabbed and won the Test series by 2-1.

Warne wrote, “Ricky’s decision was a shocker, presumably thinking that one good morning with the ball would finish England off. He didn’t rate the English batting and it cost him, and us. Here is the truth. Forget anything else you’ve heard or read. Ricky relied on John Buchanan’s stats, which indicated that the bowl-first, bat-last tactic at Edgbaston won more games than it lost. He looked back at the filthy weather of the previous few days, not forward, and made an assumption about the pitch having moisture in it. Wrong!

“It was a belter, an absolute road, which was to spin later in the game. He ignored McGrath’s injury because arrogance refused to let him believe England could play. The entire series was defined right there, at Edgbaston, when Ricky was blind to the cricketing facts in front of him. England were thrown a huge bone and fed from it for the rest of the series.”

According to Warne, it was the worst decision made by any of captain that he played under. In the second position of worst decision, Warne put former Australian captain Steve Waugh’s decision to make India follow-on during the famous Eden Gardens (Kolkata) Test in 2001 that Australia lost by 171 runs.

Also read: Shane Warne remarks Steve Waugh as the most selfish player

Meanwhile, Warne also slammed the head coach John Buchanan who questioned players’ lack of attitude to achieve the victory. Later, it turned to a heated argument between Warne and Buchanan.

Shane Warne and John Buchanan

Warne recalled that incident, “On the bus on the way back to the hotel after the game, John Buchanan called a team meeting. I was like, ‘Oh no, what’s he going to say now?’ We collected in the team room and he started with an obvious line, something like, ‘We didn’t play very well again this game.’ Yep, true, Buck. Then he said, ‘But why didn’t we play well?’ Maybe you tell us, Buck. So he did.”

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“It was along the lines of ‘I don’t think you blokes care enough and, playing like you are, I don’t think you’re worthy of wearing the baggy green cap.’ I could sense the rage bubbling in the room and could feel it burning inside me, but I waited for the captain, anyone, to say some-thing. Everyone sat there quietly, heads down, no-one willing to get involved. I thought, ‘To hell with this,’ stood up and said, ‘Buck, don’t you ever tell me I don’t care enough and that I’m not worthy of wearing the baggy green cap. I’ve busted my balls for a long time, so has everyone else in this room, so how about we just play and you keep your thoughts to yourself.’

“McGrath said, ‘I’m with Warney.’ Magilla said, ‘I’m with Warney too.’ Ricky was like, ‘Hey, hey, alright, calm down, you blokes.’ I said, ‘F*** this meeting, I’m not taking this shit from him,’ and started to walk out.”