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Shane Warne died of natural causes, Thai autopsy confirms

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S

hane Warne died of natural causes, an autopsy undertaken by officials in Thailand has confirmed.

Authorities announced the findings on Monday after the Australian cricket legend died last week at the age of 52 on the island of Koh Samui while on holiday with friends.

Following the verdict that he suffered a heart attack, with no suspicious circumstances, Warne’s family have accepted the finding and his body will be transferred to the Australian embassy in Thailand ahead of its return to his homeland.

“Today investigators received the autopsy result, in which the medical opinion is that the cause of death is natural,” Kissana Phathanacharoen said in a statement.

“Investigators will summarise the autopsy result for prosecutors within the timeframe of the law.”

Well-wishers left tributes of flowers, flags, an Australian sports shirt, a can of beans and a packet of cigarettes outside the villa on the northeast coast of Koh Samui where Warne was found unconscious.

Warne, one of the finest spin bowlers of all time whose talent and personality transcended the sport, died on Friday, spurring tributes, with Australian prime minister Scott Morrison calling him “one of our nation’s greatest characters”.

Tom Hall, who was staying at the same resort where Warne was found unconscious in his room, said there were “no unusual circumstances” surrounding the flamboyant former cricketer’s death.

Hall, chief executive of website the Sporting News, said none of Warne’s travelling companions were aware of him visiting a doctor, though he had complained to a friend of “some chest pains and shortness of breath”.

Earlier, Thai police said Warne also had asthma and some heart issues, citing information from his family.

Australian media said Warne’s family funeral would be followed by a memorial service at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) within two or three weeks.

The Great Southern Stand at the MCG, where the spinner took his 700th wicket on Boxing Day 2006, will be renamed the S K Warne Stand.

Additional reporting by Reuters.

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