Warne commits to rebuild tsunami-hit cricket ground

Published: Thursday, December 28, 2006, 23:53 [IST]
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Sydney:Retiring champion spinner Shane Warne has committed his charitable foundation to pay $20,000 for tsunami reconstruction work in Sri Lanka.

The move followed revelations last week that the cricketer's charitable trust had failed to deliver a promised $50,000 for repair of the devastated cricket ground in the Sri Lankan town of Galle, where Warne took his 500th Test wicket in March 2004.

Warne said a promotional event last year in Melbourne for the sale of wristbands, which was meant to raise funds for the reconstruction of the Galle ground, had failed to attract much support and that was why his foundation could not send the promised money.

''I can say we're giving the Sri Lankan Cricket Club $20,000 today, which goes towards helping build some cricket grounds,'' he was quoted as saying by Sydney Morning Herald on the Boxing Day celebrity breakfast, attended among others by fellow retiring pacer Glenn McGrath.

Warne had visited Galle a month after the tsunami devastated the coastal Lankan town and saw the picturesque cricket ground being swamped by the natural disaster.

He had handed out food, cricket sets and toys to children orphaned in the tsunami, which killed an estimated 35,000 Sri Lankans.

Former Aussie captain Steve Waugh is also heavily involved in tsunami reconstruction in India and Sri Lanka. Waugh's charitable foundation recently handed over the keys to its seventh donated house to villagers in Seenigama, 20 kilometres north of Galle.


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