“It was the most rural, isolated part of Zimbabwe and there were some war veterans that had taken over a commercial farm and it was pretty scary but I had to interview them about the election and the leader of this gang.
“They were kind of like bikies and no teeth and everything and chains around their neck and I was asking them how they would vote in the upcoming election and the leader, he was glaring at me and he said, you’re British and I thought, here is my moment and I said, no, I’m Australian, and he looked at me and the others and said, ‘Shane Warne!’”.
Praising Warnie as "a reflection of the great Aussie character", Julie admitted that she had “never been so relieved to hear Shane Warne‘s name as I was then”.
“He was my lifeline and apparently Warnie had played in Zimbabwe during the 90s and everybody there just fell in love with the great man,” he said.
“So his impact is way beyond Australia and I found time and time again that people would raise Shane Warne as part of the great Australian character.”
On March 5th 2022, Australians woke to the news that Shane had been found unresponsive in a hotel room in Thailand. Despite being given CPR, the former athlete was unable to be revived and was pronounced dead. His autopsy later revealed he died of natural causes.
The Spin King is set to be honoured in a grand farewell on Wednesday, March 30th, after Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews offered a State Funeral for the Melbourne-born spin bowler, to recognise "one of our greatest cricketers of all time".