Bowler looking at options for next county season August 18, 2007

Warne considers German passport route

Cricinfo staff

This way for Germany, that way for Australia © Getty Images

Shane Warne is considering applying for a German passport so he can play county cricket as a non-overseas player next year. Warne's mother was born in Germany and he is planning to investigate the matter further during the English winter.

If Warne was to follow the German route he would probably have to lose his Australian passport as dual citizenship is not allowed under German law. Next season counties will be allowed a single overseas player instead of two.

"My Mum was German," Warne told the BBC. "She came over to Australia when she was, I think, four or five. With only one overseas [player] next year, it's something we're looking at."

"I've sat down with Shane and had a long discussion with him and he went away from the meeting quite happy with the idea," the Hampshire chairman Rod Bransgrove told the Weekend Australian. "It is theoretically possible once Shane receives his German passport that we would then register him as a local, and not an import, allowing my county to recruit in effect a second overseas player.

"He's given me and my county board an undertaking that he will pursue the matter over the winter. But rest assured even when he gets it, you'll never be able to take the Australian out of Shane Warne."

However, a spokesman for Warne told the Herald Sun: "It is a bit of a joke. Shane is very, very, very, happy as an Australian. In all seriousness, I have never had a conversation with him before about becoming a German."