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Australian cricket great Shane Warne has discussed what he considered to be the 'lowest point' in his life, separating from former wife Simone while on an Ashes tour in England.
Warne's spectacular career has seen equally spectacular tabloid coverage of his personal life, which at the height of his playing days was marred by reports of infidelity.
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Discussing the difficult time in his life ahead of the release of the documentary about his life, titled 'Shane' on Amazon Prime, Warne said he was left 'devastated' by what had happened.
The 52-year-old said he only had himself to blame for Simone's decision to return to Australia mid-way through the series with the former couple's three children.
Adding salt to the wound were the constant stream of taunts from England's Barmy Army as he took to the field for a hard-fought series, which England ultimately won 2-1.
“Getting divorced was a difficult time in my life and for my children. And it was my fault, so I have to live with it for the rest of my life,” Warne said while discussing the topic on Fox Cricket.
“A week before the Ashes series to do that and then have to drag myself off the canvas to get out there and play against a quality England side. To have the Barmy Army for six hours a day, not just 10 minutes singing songs and sing ‘where’s your missus gone?’
“I’m sitting there worrying about my children that I was hoping I was going to spend three months of the Ashes series with. But because of my own doing, they had to turn around and find a flight.
“I was pretty devastated with that and that was the lowest point of my life. And then I had to go out and play an Ashes series.”
Shane Warne describes frustrations of paparazzi attention
Warne has never been shy to put himself out in the public sphere, but he admitted the excessive attention he gets was often too much.
He described an incident where a shirtless stroll on his balcony had been snapped by a hidden photographer - prompting suggestions he'd been swanning around deliberately in a bid for attention.
“Like the other day I got out of the shower and was sitting on my balcony and I get papped on my balcony — which I had no idea the guy was there," he said.
“Next I read people saying ‘he just waned to strut with his shirt off on his balcony to get pictures’. Are you serious? I’ve got my big fat guts out on the balcony, I should be able to have that privacy.”
Seeing his personal life play out in tabloid news and magazines was not what he wanted, Warne said.
The impact it had on his children, particularly at a younger age, was an aspect he found particularly disturbing, alleging there had been times the press had behaved in a downright dangerous manner in order to get pictures to sell.
“It’s not fair on my children to do that. I resented it for a while, I understand it now,” he said.
“To have to try and deal with it every day is hard for people to understand. A lot of people might say ‘get on with it, does it really matter?’
“But when it affects your life, your children’s lives. You don’t leave your house because you’re getting followed and they drive like maniacs and try and cut you off and your kids get scared in the car so you stay in the house. That’s a bit of an issue.”
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