London: Australian bowling great Shane Warne apologised on Tuesday for the foul-mouthed Twenty20 confrontation that earned him a ban and a fine, and said he hoped he had not tarnished his legacy in the sport.
Warne admitted he had gone too far in his on-field row with West Indian batsman Marlon Samuels in Australia’s Big Bash League but defended his right to show “emotion and passion”.
“I’m very passionate when I play the game. I overstepped the line and hence I’m missing a game,” Warne, 43, told an Australian television channel.
“I thought it was a pretty harsh penalty but I was more disappointed in my own actions, especially as a captain.
“It was emotion and passion. We sometimes like to see that in sportsmen and not robots. “I apologise to the fans and I apologise to everyone. Sitting and doing detention, it’s not easy to watch the boys.”
The colourful Warne’s woes continued on Tuesday when a Scottish court fined him £500 ($803) in absentia for driving at more than 100 miles (160 kilometres) per hour on a road with a 70mph limit.
He escaped a driving ban, but had five penalty points put on his licence at Dumfries Justice of the Peace Court south of Glasgow.
Talking about his on-field antics, Melbourne Stars captain Warne, furious after Samuels impeded batsman David Hussey, later confronted the West Indian with an obscenity and in the following over, hurled the ball at his chest.
Samuels, playing for city rivals the Melbourne Renegades, reacted by tossing his bat towards Australia’s record Test wicket-taker and the two squared up before being separated by the umpires.
Warne was banned for one match and fined $4,700 over the row. But he expressed hope that “one little incident” wouldn’t besmirch his reputation among cricket fans.
“I’d like to think of the 25 years I’ve been playing first-class cricket rather than just one game,” he said.