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‘England are crap’ & ‘we’re sponsored by a beer company’: When Hughes explained what’s special about the Ashes to Warne


Shane Warne played his first Ashes series in 1993 and he would go on to torment England for the rest of his career. The leg spinner couldn’t have hoped for a better start to his maiden Ashes series as he got the wicket of Mike Gatting with his first delivery. That delivery! yes, that which is now known as the ball of the century. But before making his Ashes debut, Warne was still a youngster looking to cement his place in the playing XI at a time when the Australian team was full of veterans.

So, before the start of the series he asked Australian paceman Merv Hughes, known for his moustaches, about what is so special about Ashes and Hughes’ response was epic.

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“I remember sitting on the plane with Merv, asking ‘Merv, what’s so special about the Ashes? I remember being in Bristol playing league cricket when you regained the Ashes (in 1989), it looked awesome.’ Warne was quoted as saying by foxsports.com.au on episode two of A Week with Warnie.

“He goes ‘I’ll tell you why it’s so good. There’s no air travel. You’re sitting on a bus with all your teammates for six months, just driving around.

“‘Two: we’re sponsored by a beer company.

“‘Three: There’s still rest days in Test cricket.

“‘Four: England are cr*p.’

“He said the Ashes series are awesome!”

Australia won the series comfortably and Warne finished as the leading wicket taker with 34 scalps. Guess who was right behind him? well it was the great Merv Hughes, who picked up 31 wickets as the duo battered the Englishmen on their on soil.



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