What a right mess Shane Warne has gotten himself into this time. For those who missed the commentary last night Warne made two comments which, to summarise, were along these lines:
1. That he refused to wear his baggy green hat to Wimbledon on Pat Rafter’s request because he thought it inappropriate; and
2. He did not agree with the need to wear his baggy green in the first hour of play as required by his captain of the day, Steve Waugh and, indeed, saw to do so to be unnecessary in favour of his floppy white hat.
I have no cavil with Warne’s view regarding his first statement: I happen to agree with the premise that wearing the baggy green to Wimbledon is inappropriate and, indeed, an affront to the cap and all it stands for.
It is the second statement made by Warne that I do have a cavil with however. Indeed I have three problems with Warne’s statement:
1. Warne seemed to suggest that it was an imposition of Steve Waugh that baggy green be worn during the first hour of play. Obviously Warne’s memory has been pickled by the botox he has had injected or the plugs in his hair because the “imposition” of the baggy green “rule” was put in place by Allan Border and then picked up by Mark Taylor.
2. Warne suggests that he did not need to wear the baggy green to show his patriotism. The wearing of the cap was not a question of patriotism though to my way of thinking. Rather it was a sign of unity both in spirit and in purpose or at least that is what I thought it was meant to show. The wearing of the cap was a metaphor for the strength of the team and the strength of the team. Thinking about it though is it really a surprise that Warne would be interested in his own interests rather than showing team unity? This is the man who took a banned substance to look good on camera and left his team short for a World Cup after all.
3. Warne suggests that he did not like wearing his cap because it was tight and it gave him a headache. Come on Shane: you were a key player in this Australian team and you are telling me that you could not ask for a bigger hat? That sounds like a rubbish excuse to me!
I do not question Warne’s patriotism and I support his position on wearing the cap to Wimbeldon. The fact that he thought he did not need be part of a gesture designed to show team unity and strength is not a surprise given his past form on matters of team solidarity. That being the case, I have a simple question for S Warne: can Cricket Australia please have it’s baggy green cap back?