It has been 18 months since the passing of Australian cricket icon Shane Warne, and the Warne name will continue to breathe peacefully for many years to come.
The Shane Warne Legacy Foundation will provide free five-minute heart tests on the first four days of the Boxing Day Test. They intend to “preserve the memory” of the Australian cricket spin bowler with initiatives to improve the lives of many Australians hopefully.
Along with the heart checks, the Shane Warne Legacy Foundation will raise money by selling floppy and bucket hats throughout the match.
“We miss Warnie so much and we’re very honoured to be working with the Shane Warne Legacy to make such a positive change in his honour,” Cricket Australia CEO, Nick Hockley, said.
The idea of the foundation came about with a “simple idea” as Helen Nolan, the CEO of the Shane Warne Legacy described.
“I picked up the phone one night. I was sitting on the couch and I picked up the phone to Nick Hockley and here we are,” she said.
At the Melbourne Cricket Ground, the Shane Warne Legacy heart tests will be launched during one of Shane’s favourite weeks of the year.
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The leg-spinner loved the Boxing Day Test, and as Nolan recalls the day she spent with Warne before heading to Thailand, he referred to the ground as his “office”.
“[Shane] was always destined to leave a legacy, but it’s more than cricket now. This will save lives,” she said.
Jackson Warne was glowing about the idea that his father’s legacy will continue beyond cricket, urging people to get a free heart test.
“[Shane] probably thought he was leaving a legacy as arguably one of the greatest cricketers or the greatest leg spinner, but now his legacy is now saving lives,” he said.
“To know there’s now going to be 23 stations around the boxing day test, I think Dad would be on with that.”
At 3:50 pm, everyone with the floppy hats will be tipping them to honour Shane, Warnie’s signature move.
“To honour Dad, he’ll be up there somewhere watching … he’ll be happy,” Jackson Warne said.
A “silent killer” as Nolan described, 50,000 Australians lose their lives every year to heart disease.
“It’s a message to all Australians to get your numbers checked, and it’s a fantastic gesture and initiative by the Warne family,” Professor Steve Nicholls said.
“If we can have people knowing their numbers and owning their numbers, they can go a long way towards preventing heart disease … know your numbers, own your numbers, go back to your GP and have a conversation about what to do with it.”