Royals Sports Group-owned franchise Rajasthan Royals will be paying their tributes and celebrating the extraordinary life of their first-ever Royal – Shane Warne, whose sudden demise, at the age of just 52, sent shockwaves across the world of sports and beyond. In a befitting tribute to the cricket legend, the cricketing world will come together to pay their respects before today’s match between the Mumbai Indians and the Rajasthan Royals in the same DY Patil Stadium where the Warne-led Rajasthan side lifted the inaugural IPL trophy in 2008, on this exact date.
Chairman of the Rajasthan Royals, Ranjit Barthakur stated ahead of the match, “Warne was one of the greatest cricketers of all time, who not only adored and embraced the IPL as an idea and as a tournament, but was also its biggest advocate… It is befitting that the same stadium where Warne lifted the IPL trophy will see the cricketing world come together to pay their respects and celebrate his life. The franchise would like to iterate that it will not be an occasion to mourn, but to commemorate the great man, and salute him for his never-ending We look forward to having everyone’s support in making this a very special occasion for everyone associated with Warne – be it from close quarters or from a distance. We will be doing this for Warnie.”
Rajasthan Royals has thanked the BCCI and the official broadcaster of the IPL, Star Sports, for their support in bringing the celebration to life. A special invitation was also sent to Warne’s family. Shane’s brother, Jason Warne, will be flying down to Mumbai to join the team in the celebrations. The Royals have also reached out to the Batch of 2008 and have appreciated the players who have sent their tributes for the greatest leg-spinner of all time. These tributes will be made available on the matchday on Rajasthan Royals’ social media as well as Star Sports’ broadcast feed.
The Rajasthan Royals playing squad will be sporting the special initials “SW23” on the leading collar of their official playing kits – paying tribute to the legend and carrying his presence with them throughout the match. As a mark of respect, among other dedicated tributes, a special area at the DY Patil Stadium has also been turned into a Shane Warne Tribute Gallery, in which all the ticket-holding fans, as well as the students of the DY Patil University, will be able to visit and experience.