Thai autopsy shows Shane Warne died of natural causes

Published March 8, 2022
The body of Australian cricket player Shane Warne is transported after finishing the autopsy processes at the forensic laboratory of Surat Thani hospital, in Surat Thani province, Thailand, March 7. — Reuters
The body of Australian cricket player Shane Warne is transported after finishing the autopsy processes at the forensic laboratory of Surat Thani hospital, in Surat Thani province, Thailand, March 7. — Reuters

KOH SAMUI: An autopsy showed the death last week of Australian cricket great Shane Warne on an island in Thailand was due to natural causes, the Thai police said on Monday.

Warne’s family had accepted the finding and his body would be transferred to Australian consular officials for return to the family, a deputy police spokesman said.

“Today investigators received the autopsy result, in which the medical opinion is that the cause of death is natural,” Kissana Phathanacharoen said in a statement. “Investigators will summarize the autopsy result for prosecutors within the timeframe of the law.”

Warne’s body would be flown to Australia on Tues­day, Police Lieutenant General Surachate Hak­parn told a news conference.

The senior police official ruled out any foul play and said Warned died due to a suspected heart attack.

The autopsy report showed Warne died of a “congenital disease”, Son­gyot Chayaninporamet, dep­uty director of Samui Hospital, told a news conference.

“There is no Covid-19 infec­tion and no sign of assault or murder,” Songyot added.

Allan McKinnon, Aus­tralia’s ambassador to Thailand, who has been on Koh Samui since the day after Warne’s death, thanked authorities for their professionalism.

“It was very important that this whole case be conducted very smoothly,” he said.

Warne’s family released a statement on Monday saying the day of his death was for them the beginning of a never-ending nightmare.

“Looking to a future without Shane is inconceivable, hopefully the mountain of happy memories we all have will help us cope with our ongoing grief,” his father and mother, Keith and Brigitte, wrote.

They said the family has accepted the offer of a state funeral and is grateful that a section of the Melbourne Cricket Ground will be renamed the S.K. Warne Stand in honour of their son.

“As everyone knows, Shane was an extremely proud Victorian and Australian,” they said.

Warne's son, Jackson, wrote: “I don’t think anything is ever going to fill the void you have left in my heart. You were truly the best father and mate anyone could’ve asked for.”

Over the weekend fans paid homage to Warne at the Melbourne Cricket Ground — including offerings of cigarettes, beer and meat pies — to remember an extraordinary cricketing talent with a huge appetite for life.

Credited with reviving the art of leg-spin, Warne was part of a dominant Australian Test team in the 1990s and 2000s and helped his country win the 1999 limited-overs World Cup.

Published in Dawn, March 8th, 2022

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