|Melbourne, Aug 21 (ANI): Spin legend Shane Warne led the player praise for Channel 9's hit mini-series "Howzat! Kerry Packer's War", thanking the late media mogul for changing cricket and the lives of those who made millions from it.
The stunning homage to Packer, played by Offspring actor Lachy Hulme, won a debut audience of 2.097 million nationally on Sunday night.
Delivering on Nine Entertainment boss David Gyngell's bold prediction the series would be "the biggest piece of television this year," the Southern Star production had been widely hailed as the best drama of 2012, news.com.au reports.
Hulme, whose performance already has him favourite for the best actor Logie award, largely stayed away from social media, which was flooded with five-star reviews of his physical transformation and colourful characterisation of the late media mogul.
The rush to praise Hulme and the casting of Australia's best actors as the cricket legends who revolutionised the game in the 1970s with World Series Cricket saw the show trend in top spot on social media around Australia and the world.
Tapping into the audience's love of nostalgia, the Howzat! soundtrack broke into the iTunes top 10 album charts less than 24 hours after its release.
Warne joined the Twitter talk, posting his thanks to producers for honouring the man who had re-invented the game and challenged the authorities to pay its players what they deserved, news.com.au reports.
"Every cricketer today should be so thankful for what Kerry Packer and the players did in the 70's . . . especially Ian Chappell and Richie (Benaud). Ps don't forget what John Cornell and Austin Robertson did too . . . All I can say is thank you to everyone concerned for what you did. In finishing, thank you Kerry we all miss you very much," Warne wrote on Twitter. (ANI)