MELBOURNE – Shane Warne apologised today for his shirt-grabbing performance in the Melbourne derby but also insisted it was important cricketers played with passion and not like robots.
The suspended skipper looked on nervously at the MCG as Melbourne Stars scored a 13-run win over bottom side Sydney Thunder to claim a 5-3 record from their eight regular-season games and qualify for next week’s semi-finals.
Warne is now free to return to the side in what could be his final game for the Stars at age 43.
The champion leg-spinner can put his physical clash with Melbourne Renegades batsman Marlon Samuels behind him, but not before trying to clear the air publicly over his actions.
However, similar to Monday’s performance after emerging from his disciplinary hearing, Warne wasn’t quite able to fully accept his one-game penalty.
“I’m very passionate when I play the game. I overstepped the line and hence I’m missing a game,” Warne said.
“I thought it was a pretty harsh penalty but I was more disappointed in my own actions, especially as a captain.
“It was emotion and passion. We sometimes like to see that in sportsmen and not robots.
“I apologise to the fans and I apologise to everyone. Sitting and doing detention, it’s not easy to watch the boys.”
Australia’s leading Test wicket-taker said he didn’t want to be judged on one behavioural lapse late in his magnificent career.
“I’d like to think of the 25 years I’ve been playing first-class cricket rather than just one game,” he said.
“I’d like to think there’s a lot of positive and good things I’ve done for Australian cricket and all that sort of stuff over the years.
“One little incident here or there (doesn’t matter). I do apologise for my behaviour and I’m disappointed in my own reaction,” he said.††