MCG to honor Shane Warne during Boxing Day Test between Australia and South Africa

Australia v Pakistan - 1st Test: Day 4
Shane Warne. (Image Credits: Getty)

Australian and South African players will wear floppy hats while singing the national anthems at the start of the Boxing Day Test at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) to pay tribute to the late Shane Warne. His Test cap no. 350 will also be painted square of the wicket during the match.

The spin legend shocked the cricketing fraternity as he abruptly passed away in Thailand following a heart attack in March 2022.

Due to the lasting legacy left by the 145-Test veteran, some graphics of Warne from his career will be displayed on the MCG screens at 3:50 pm on Boxing Day.

Cricket Australia (CA) chief Nick Hockley believes the Boxing Day Test is the perfect occasion to pay tribute to Warne, who has been an inspiration and icon throughout his career.

Hockley was quoted as saying by Perth Now:

"Shane is an icon to cricket fans globally for the greatness of his cricketing achievements, his charisma and his infectious enthusiasm for the game. Whilst we continue to mourn his passing, it is fitting that we honour Shane at his beloved Boxing Day Test at the MCG."

He continued:

"I know I speak for the whole cricket community in saying that our thoughts continue to be with Shane's family and friends and particularly his children Brooke, Jackson and Summer."

Last week, his former Big Bash League (BBL) franchise Melbourne Stars honored him at the MCG in a match against the Hobart Hurricanes. A memorial service also took place at the venue in March and was attended by over 50,000 people.

Shane Warne took his 700th Test wicket at the MCG

Melbourne Cricket Ground. (Image Credits: Twitter)
Melbourne Cricket Ground. (Image Credits: Twitter)

During his illustrious career, the 52-year-old made Boxing Day Tests his own, notably dismissing England opener Andrew Strauss with a ripping delivery to claim his 700th Test scalp.

He finally finished with 708 Test wickets and remains Australia's leading wicket-taker in the longest format. The wrist-spinner also claimed a famous hat-trick against England at the MCG in 1994.

Meanwhile, Australia hold a 1-0 lead over South Africa in the ongoing three-match Test series after winning the first game at the Gabba within two days.

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Edited by Samya Majumdar