Chris Tremlett: ‘Warne took me under his wing, he saw the potential in me’
It’s a shame I can’t speak to Shane Warne again and thank him because I wouldn’t have got to where I got to, and played for England, without him.
He will leave a legacy in so many different ways. People remember him for his antics off the field, he was a rock and roll cricketer, but Warne will always go down as the best bowler and arguably the best cricketer of all time.
We shared some years together at Hampshire and he was so influential. I was a talented youngster but probably didn’t believe enough in myself. Shane instilled a massive culture change not just in me but our underperforming team.
He’s been so influential for me and my career, he taught me so much. He toughened me up and took me under his wing a little bit to show me what it takes to make it.
At times he was pretty hard on me but he only did that because he cared and wanted me to get the best out of myself.
There weren’t many of us at Hampshire who had the potential to play for England and he said that to me.
I was a six foot seven bowler who could bowl quite fast and I was his go-to wicket taker.
Shane saw the England potential in me early on but he was very honest with me too. He told me I was going to have to change a few things, get a bit nastier and want to succeed a little bit more.
He was brutally honest with me but he was one of those few people I kept listening to.
If I was struggling and bowling a few no balls, he wouldn’t go easy on me.
He’d swear at me and tell me to find a way to get it done. It’s something that’s stuck with me for life – not everything is easy and sometimes you need to adapt.
It was almost like a ‘I don’t care what you do, just find a way to get it done’ mentality and that certainly made me a better player.
He was a fantastic bloke and made cricket cool – that’s why you see posts from the Barmy Army saying ‘we wish you were English’, citing that famous Ashes chant.
He made the game interesting and he made the Ashes interesting. Without him in that rivalry the Ashes would never have been the same.
People will play his footage for the next 100 years and you won’t see a character like him.
Shane lived a normal person’s life so many times over, there was never a dull moment. He was out at all hours doing what not, he was always so much fun.
He was simply the greatest ever and I am in shock.
This afternoon is England’s chance at a fresh start. The last 12 months have been grim for Joe Root’s side and it’s about time some people stepped up.
There could be a new opener in Alex Lees and a new-look bowling line-up, too, but in the West Indies this month England need to urgently set the foundations – like they did in the white-ball game – and build a quality side.
Leaving out Jimmy Anderson and Stuart Broad is still a shock but I suppose it’s been done so some of the other lads – albeit without an injured Ollie Robinson – can lay their claim to a place heading into a busy home summer.