Warne family accepts state funeral offer

A state funeral will be held in Victoria for Shane Warne after the cricketing great died of a suspected fatal heart attack in Thailand on Friday.

Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews confirmed on Sunday Warne’s family had accepted the state government’s offer, with more details in coming days.

“It will be an opportunity for Victorians to pay tribute to his contribution to his sport, to our state and the country,” Andrews said.


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Warne’s manager earlier revealed the cricketer had finished a “ridiculous” diet of consuming only fluids days before his death

“He did go on these ridiculous sort of diets, and he was just finished with one,” James Erskine told Nine’s Weekend Today on Sunday.

“It was a bit all or nothing. It was either white buns with butter and lasagna stuffed in the middle or he would be having black and green juices.

“He obviously smoked most of his life. I don’t know. I think it was just a massive heart attack.”

Yuttana Sirisombat, superintendent at the Bo Phut police station, told reporters Warne had been suffering chest pains before arriving in Thailand. He also had asthma and had seen a doctor about his heart.

The death of the 52-year-old 145-Test veteran on the island of Koh Samui is not being treated as suspicious.

Warne was staying in a private villa with three mates, one of whom performed CPR after finding him unresponsive when he did not show up for dinner.

He was taken by ambulance to Thai International Hospital and later his body was transferred to Ko Samui Hospital.

Erskine told Fox Cricket Warne was only three days into a planned three-month holiday and alone watching cricket when he fell ill.

His friend Andrew Neophitou, who was among the group staying in the same villa, went to check on him.

“They were going to have a drink … or go and meet someone to go out and have a drink at 5 pm and Neo knocked on his door at 5.15 pm because Warnie is always on time,” Erskine said.

“He went in there … and then realised something was wrong. And he turned him over and gave him CPR and mouth-to-mouth, which lasted about 20 minutes and then the ambulance came.”

Australia’s ambassador to Thailand Allan McKinnon said police and hospital staff in Ko Samui were working to get Warne’s body back to Australia quickly.

“They have been very compassionate, very efficient and very understanding,” he said.

Sirisombat says Warne’s body will be moved for an autopsy in the main state hospital in Surat Thani province on Sunday.

A forensic team has inspected the villa where Warne was found and his friends have given statements to police as part of standard procedure.

Erskine told Weekend Today Warne’s family was understandably devastated with the cricketer’s children – daughters Brooke, 24, and Summer, 20, and 22-year-old son Jackson – in “complete shock”.

Meanwhile tributes continue to pour in from all walks of life, with newspapers, celebrities, politicians and adoring fans lining up to recall their memories of the legendary legspinner.

Others left flowers, meat pies, beers and cigarettes at his statue outside the MCG throughout Saturday, where the southern stand will be renamed the S.K. Warne Stand in his honour.

Hollywood star Russell Crowe tweeted he was having a hard time accepting the news.

“Genius player. Grand company. Loyal friend,” he tweeted.

Rolling Stones frontman and passionate cricket fan Mick Jagger tweeted: “He brought such joy to the game and was the greatest spin bowler ever”.

With agencies.

© AAP 2022