Shane Warne has taken a furious dig at Waleed Aly over reports the TV host has been advising the AFL on the state of the game.
The Herald Sun reported on Monday night that Aly was among a number of people identified by the AFL to offer advice on potential rule changes.
The group included former players and commentators, as well as the host of Channel 10’s ‘The Project’.
The report was met with heavy criticism from a number of Australian sporting personalities, including Warne.
“Please tell me this is fake news & that this arrogant cretan (sic) is in no way way involved on any level !!!” Warnie tweeted in response to the Herald Sun story.
— Shane Warne (@ShaneWarne) August 20, 2018
And he wasn’t alone.
— Andrew Bogut (@andrewbogut) August 20, 2018
Waleed Aly hand-picked by the AFL to help talk rule changes.
I would’ve said that Wayne Carey becoming the Pope is more likely, but you know. Just AFL things.
Absolute car wreck. #afl
— Jack Hudson (@jhudson_10) August 20, 2018
One name doesn't belong here:
Gerard Healy, Malcolm Blight, Waleed Aly, Gerard Whateley & Mike Sheahan.
— James McKern (@jLmcKern) August 20, 2018
Waleed Aly a smart man, long time footy fan. League seeking a wide range of opinions, and at least moving beyond time honoured footy heads/voices. Interesting yarn, for sure, but let’s cut Hocking some slack. Thorough!
— Mark Stevens (@Stevo7AFL) August 20, 2018
However Aly denied the report on Tuesday, saying he simply asked the AFL a range of questions, rather than advising anyone.
The Richmond fan said his friendship with AFLW CEO Nicole Livingstone resulted in him being briefed on some of the league’s future plans.
“TV host advises on rules — that’s categorically incorrect. I did not advise anybody, I was not consulted,” Aly said on SEN radio on Tuesday.
“There’s been a lot of talk about three or four things that the AFL was pretty solid on doing to the game to make some changes to the style of the game, but no one was really saying in public what they were. So I was pressing her for information.
“And credit to Nicole, she said, ‘I absolutely can’t tell you that.’
“She then said, ‘If you want, I can get you to a briefing and you can see what they’re looking at, the analysis behind it, that sort of thing.'”
“It was me trying to get a sense at how they’d crunched their data.”
Aly went on to say he didn’t think the AFL was particularly interested in his thoughts anyway.
According to cricket journalist Daniel Brettig, Aly has done similar things with Cricket Australia.
“Waleed spoke influentially to CA about fanbase of the game before the BBL was introduced in 2011,” he tweeted. “If anything the AFL is late and reactive here.”
Fyi Waleed spoke influentially to CA about fanbase of the game before the BBL was introduced in 2011. If anything the AFL is late and reactive here https://t.co/QI9i08GLwH
— Daniel Brettig (@danbrettig) August 20, 2018