Pietersen thought Warne an idiot
KEVIN Pietersen admitted he thought Shane Warne was an ‘arrogant Australian idiot of a cricketer’ after the pair clashed during the first Test of the current Ashes series.
Last month at the Gabba, Warne almost hit Pietersen when throwing the ball to Australia wicket-keeper Adam Gilchrist.
An unimpressed Pietersen fended the ball away with his bat and made his feelings clear to Warne, whom he has often cited as a close friend.
Warne is Pietersen’s captain at English county Hampshire and last year championed the South African-born shotmaker’s cause ahead of his Test debut in the first Ashes clash of the 2005 series.
All that though was forgotten out in the middle at Brisbane. ‘‘For a few mad seconds I thought, mates or not, I am never going to speakto that dickhead again,’’ Pietersen told the NewsoftheWorld, Britain’s biggest-selling Sunday tabloid newspaper.
‘‘The Ashes battle of 2005 was never like that,’’ added Pietersen, who was dropped early on by Warne during his innings of 158 in the final Test at The Oval in September last year which sealed England’s 2-1 series win. However, he insisted that his falling-out with the champion leg-spinner did not last long. ‘‘We chatted at the end of the Test and got over it.’’
Australia are an unbeatable 3-0 up in this series heading into the fourth Test that started at the Melbourne Cricket Ground — Warne’s home venue — yesterday
Pietersen, who said Warne was ‘the greatest bowler who ever walked on this planet’, added: ‘‘Shane has been a major influence on my career. He’s one of the reasons I moved from Nottinghamshire to Hampshire.’’
And he praised Warne for the way in which he still managed to be Australia’s star during the 2005 Ashes despite the highly public collapse of his marriage to wife Simone.
‘‘Splitting with Simone must have made those summer months in England last year so tough — yet he took40 wickets and scored nearly 300 runs.’’
And Pietersen, 26, who again scored 158 in the second Test of this series, at Adelaide, said he’d never known anyone more competitive than Warne.
‘‘He never stops. Shane seriously expects to get a wicket with every delivery. Warney is box office — that is what every cricketer should aspire to be,’’ he said.