The world lost one of the game’s greatest when Shane Warne untimely passed away earlier this month due to a heart-attack at the age of just 52. He was a legendary leg-spinner who continued to astonish with his sheer skills of getting batsmen out, including behind their legs, throughout his career.
Warne picked up a huge number of 708 wickets in test cricket and 293 in one-day internationals. He took a 5-wicket haul as many as 37 times in tests.
But Warne was also handy with the bat. At times, more than handy when the Aussie batting line-up struggled. One such incredible knock of his came against New Zealand in December 2001 in the 3rd and the last test of the series.
The first two tests in Gabba and Hobart turned into draws, so the winner of the 3rd match would have taken away the series.
New Zealand won the toss and elected to bat. Thanks to the three centuries from Lou Vincent, Stephen Flaming and Nathan Astle, they declared at a large score of 534 for 9. Australia didn’t have a good start and they kept losing wickets. Warne entered the scene when they were in trouble at 192 for 6 and unsure whether they would avoid the follow-on.
He had a good counter-attacking partnership with Damien Martyn but the latter got out on 60 when the score was 270 for 7. Warne continued playing attacking shots. But when he reached 80 odd, Australia had lost 9 wickets with Jason Gillespie out with the score on 346 for 9.
With Australia’s famous number 11 batsman Glenn McGrath for company, Warne took two 2’s off Shane Bond’s bowling when he was on 94, which took him to 98. He took a single off the last ball of the over and reached 99. Interestingly, Warne had scored an impressive 70 in the previous test at Hobart in the first innings.
New Zealand’s Daniel Vettori, who was just in his early 20s back then, bowled to Warne when he was on 99. Maybe in a hurry to reach the three-figure milestone, Warne slogged Vettori on the second ball of the over. It still wasn’t a completely bad shot because mid-on and midwicket fielders were inside the circle.
However, he got a top-edge and the ball went high up in the air. Mark Richardson, fielding at deep square-leg, took a difficult catch. Warne was out on 99! Obviously, he was dejected and so was the enthusiastic crowd at the WACA.
But the story doesn’t end here. Later on, it was found that the ball on which Warne got out on 99 was a no-ball. Vettori had clearly overstepped, which is visible in the picture below. Warne’s disappointment increased further. If the umpire had spotted the no-ball, he would have crossed to the other end and that would have been his 100.
In just September last year, Warne was the guest on the funny cricket show ‘The Professor and Barney’ on Fox Sports where he relived those moments in a humorous way. During the course of the discussion while speaking about the no-ball not given, he said,
“Gimme a 100!”
Watch from 1:10 onwards to hear Shane Warne speak about his dismissal on 99