Rajasthan Royals captain Shane Warne has said that the ongoing season of the IPL will be his last one as a player. He is likely to be associated with Rajasthan as a coach or advisor in the future. (Also Read: Shane Warne looks to life beyond cricket | Shane Warne - wine, women and wickets)
"Yes this is my last year playing IPL - please come down and support RR last 2 home games v chennai & Bangalore ! We need your help !!!!", Warne wrote on the social networking site Twitter. He confirmed that this meant he would not play any more professional cricket matches after this IPL. "A big thank you to everyone that has helped me - supported me through all the ups and downs - hope you have enjoyed watching me play," he added.
Warne captained Rajasthan to victory in the inaugural season of the IPL but the franchise's fortunes slumped in the next two seasons. He has played 52 games for Rajasthan so far picking up 56 wickets at an average of 24.66. Rajasthan are currently fourth in the points table in this edition and Warne called on Rajasthan's fans to support them in their last two home games.
"We have a spirit in the squad similar to IPL 1 - it would be great to leave on a high - I'm proud of the way we have developed young players," Warne wrote. Australia all-rounder Shane Watson, who plays under Warne in the IPL, told ESPNcricinfo in an interview that Warne was keen to leave the game on a winning note, whenever that happened.
"I think he's very motivated," Watson said. "After last year the way things panned out for Rajasthan, I think he's very motivated to make sure that whenever he leaves the game he leaves in a really good place. Warney's bowling unbelievably well and has been since the start of the tournament. There's only really one person who's ever been consistently able to do it as a leg spinner and he's bowling absolutely beautifully."
Warne has been the face of the franchise and it is likely he will continue to be associated with them in some way. "Re next year, who knows what or if I will be involved in IPL re mentor / coaching - am focused on doing best for RR this year - see u at ground," Warne tweeted.