Sydney: Shane Warne on Friday gave Australia's World Cup hopes a major boost by bowling for the first time since shoulder surgery last month and declaring he was "feeling good". The leg spinning wizard made his return just 18 days after surgery, to re-set a dislocated bowling right shoulder, and was not expected to learn until January 12 or 13 when he could start bowling again. Warne damaged the shoulder, which threatened his World Cup participation, when he dived for a ball during a One-day match against England at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) on December 15. "The sling has come off, the shoulder is feeling good, it's coming along pretty well," Warne said in a statement released on Friday by the Australian Cricket Board (ACB) after his net session.
"The movement is good so we thought we'd see how we'd go with a bowl, which I did this morning coming down to the nets before play." Warne said he was able to bowl most of his repertoire. "I eased myself into it with a couple of seamers, then some pretty ordinary leg breaks and by the end I got a couple fizzing," he said. "I'm very happy with my progress after only 18 days since the operation. My progress is good, I'm upbeat and positive about the immediate future." However Warne did not say he would definitely be ready for the World Cup. "I'm not going to put a date on things," he said. "Initially it all depends on how I pull up over the next day or so and then the next bowl I have." Warne was selected in the final 15-man Australian squad on Tuesday with team officials indicating that he would be given up to the middle of the February-March World Cup to prove his fitness.
The 33-year-old champion spinner has been working daily with physiotherapist Errol Alcott and fitness coach Jock Campbell in an effort to be fit for the World Cup, which starts in South Africa next month.