SYDNEY: Cricket great Shane Warne has blasted former Australian captain Steve Waugh as “the most selfish cricketer I’ve played with” as a long-running feud between the pair showed no sign of ending.
The ex-teammates fell out years ago with Warne still holding a grudge after Waugh played a part in his axing on the 1999 tour of the West Indies.
“There’s a lot of reasons I don’t like Steve Waugh … because he’s the most selfish cricketer I’ve played with,” Warne says on an episode of TV show “I’m a Celebrity. Get Me Out of Here”, screening Tuesday evening.
The leg-spinner said the manner in which Waugh, his then captain, told him he had been dropped was still vivid in his memory.
“One thing that really annoyed me about him was the one Test I got dropped, in the West Indies. We had to win the last Test match to win the trophy,” he said on the reality show, in which he is a contestant.
“At that stage, captain (Waugh), vice-captain (Warne) and coach (Geoff Marsh) used to pick the team.
“We went to selection. I hadn’t bowled well, we’d lost, Brian Lara batted unreal, but I felt like I was being the scapegoat, that because I didn’t bowl well it was my fault.
“We got to the selection table and said, ‘OK, what’s everyone’s thoughts?’. Steve Waugh said: ‘You’re not playing’.
“I went ‘What? Hang on. What do you think the team should be? Blah blah blah’, and Steve Waugh said ‘Nope, I’m the captain of this side … you’re not playing’.
“I was really disappointed with that. After 10 years, I’d just had a shoulder operation, I thought the situation, of having to win a Test match, would’ve brought the best out in me too.
“I don’t like Steve Waugh for a lot of other reasons, but that was the reason.”
Waugh has previously admitted the decision cost him his friendship with Warne, but in his book “The Meaning Of Luck” said it helped shape and define him as a captain.
“I lost a great friend but gained fortitude from the experience and learnt categorically that knowing what is right and acting on it are two different things,” Waugh wrote.