Warne’s booze session enraged Ponting
THE mystery keeps building.
Aussie cricket legend Shane Warne's infamous bender following the second day of Australia's crucial fourth Test against England in the 2005 Ashes has long been reported as the secret sex session that broke him.
The 49-year-old reveals what really happened that night in his new book No Spin, where he admits to having broken his rule against partying in the middle of Test matches.
Warne writes that the evening following the second day of play during the unforgettable "Nottingham Nailbiter" at Trent Bridge was the only time he has ever partied so hard in the middle of a Test match that he felt unable to play the next day.
Warne's book mentions only that he decided to "get on the piss" - and that it ruined him the next day when Australia had to bat in response to England's first innings score of 477.
While it goes into detail about his drinking session, the book gives no mention of previous reports he also engaged in an all-night sex fest the night before the third day of play.
In 2005, English tabloids reported English "double agent" Julia Reynolds claimed to have partied with Warne during a five-hour sex session the same night.
According to The Sun, Reynolds said she left Warne exhausted after an all-night sex session the day before he was dismissed for a golden duck in the first innings.
She said after the five hours of passion, Warne was left "red-eyed and knackered" as he went out to bat the next day.
"I wasn't that surprised he was out for nought because when he left me he looked pretty exhausted," she told The Mirror in 2005. "I guess you could say I've done my bit for England."
Warne confesses in the book that he was not in a state to play one of the most important Test matches of his career.
"Only once in my career did I get on the piss during a Test match and let it affect my cricket the next day," he writes. "That once was Trent Bridge in 2005."
Warne admitted his batting in the first innings was "embarrassing".
"I couldn't see the bloody thing because I'd been up until five or six in the morning and spent most of the day nodding off in the changing room," he wrote.
"When Simon Jones bowled a normal length ball, I just spooned it up in the air like I was a clubby (club-level cricketer). Embarrassing. It was the one time in the series when the pressure of everything that summer had got to me a bit and I desperately needed to let my hair down. Not good.
"I just sort of sat there thinking, 'Please make us follow on Vaughany (England captain Michael Vaughan), I need some sleep. And if you do, we bat the second time round, I promise to all Australia I will win us the game."
As fate would have it, he very nearly did.
Trying to fight back from a first-innings deficit of 259 that inspired England to enforce the follow-on, Australia produced a stubborn fightback, led by Justin Langer's knock of 61, to set England a fourth-innings chase of 129.
Warne said he pleaded with captain Ricky Ponting to open the bowling in the fourth innings - but was overlooked for quicks Brett Lee and Michael Kasprowicz.
When brought on in the fifth over, Warne struck with his first delivery to secure a first crucial break through and remove opener Marcus Trescothick.
He had two more scalps in the blink of an eye.
The Poms were in panic mode and their modest fourth-innings chase looked anything but straightforward.
At 7-116, England needed 13 runs to win and Australia was three wickets from a famous comeback victory.
A total of 129 just wasn't enough for Warne to defend that day. England won by three wickets, took a 2-1 series lead and went on to reclaim the urn.
"A few more runs up our sleeve and I truly believe we would have won," Warne said. "Unfortunately, I came on too late. Enough said."
His failure to convince Ponting to let him open the bowling may have had something to do with Reynolds' claims that the Aussie captain let Warne have both barrels after learning about his late-night antics before play on day three.
Reynolds, 36 at the time, said Warne had received a "rollicking" from Ponting after his duck.
"Ricky Ponting suspected he was out of sorts and asked Shane what he'd been up to," Reynolds said.
"Shane said he bluffed it, but I'd arranged to be with him again that night and it was good sex again, though the night before had taken its toll.
"He was really up for it in room 811 and cricket was the last thing on his mind. He ordered a bottle of champagne with one glass, thinking that might put Ponting off the scent."
Warne also devotes a chapter of his autobiography to former fiancee Elizabeth Hurley.
He describes his time with Hurley from 2011 to 2013 as the "happiest years of my life" but reveals the lack of time they spent together after she landed a role on hit TV show The Royals - and jealousy of her best friend and ex Hugh Grant - contributed to them breaking up.
The 49-year-old also delivers stinging criticism of former captain Steve Waugh, labelling him the "most selfish player I ever played with", and slams Channel 7 for its "unforgivable" coverage of his foundation.
No Spin is available in bookshops for $49.99 or can be ordered online here.