Shane Warne, considered to be one of the greatest bowlers in cricket history, virtually single-handedly revived the art of leg spin and won the World Cup with Australia in 1999, has died. He was 52.
Fox Sports television, which employed Warne as a commentator, quoted a family statement saying he died of a suspected heart attack in Koh Samui, Thailand.
Shane was found unresponsive in his villa and despite the best efforts of medical staff, he could not be revived, the statement read. The family requests privacy at this time and will provide further details in due course.
Known throughout the cricketing world as Warne took 708 Test wickets in 145 matches for Australia from 1992-2007, second only to Sri Lanka great Muttiah Muralitharan's 800 test wickets from 133 matches on the all-time list.
Warne was also part of five Ashes-winning teams against England during his career.
Warne made his test debut at the Sydney Cricket Ground in 1992 and rose to become a key figure across all formats in one of the greatest sustained periods of dominance by any team in world cricket.
He produced what became known as the Ball of the Century with his first delivery of the 1993 Ashes tour, bowling Mike Gatting with a ball that turned from well outside leg stump to clip the off bail, instantly writing himself into folklore.
Warne was noted as much for his life off the field as on it.
He was banned for a year in 2003 for taking a prohibited substance, which he blamed on his mother for giving him a diuretic to improve his appearance. But he returned in 2004 and in the third Ashes test of 2005 he became the first bowler in history to take 600 Test wickets.
Warne's exploits off the field took their toll on his marriage and he split from wife Simone, the mother of his three children. He later had a relationship and became engaged to English actor and model Liz Hurley in 2010. The pair eventually split in 2013.