Melbourne: Shane Warne’s state funeral will be held at the iconic MCG in front of an expected crowd of 100,000 people. It is expected to be a fitting farewell to the Australian spin king. The funeral date is yet to be announced, but is expected to take place in the next two to three weeks, according to reports here.
The public memorial will be held after Shane Warne’s family mourns him at a private service. The details of the icon’s last rites after the memorial service, however, are not yet known.
Warne’s manager James Erskine did not confirm MCG as the venue for the state funeral. However, he hinted that no other stadium would be an appropriate one considering the stature of the legendary Australian Warne. “But where else?” Erskine told ‘The Age’.
According to ‘Herald Sun’, the state funeral is likely to be held within two or three weeks. It will overlap with the Australian Rules Football League (AFL) season, but the MCG ‘will make all necessary arrangements to accommodate the service’.
The date has not been fixed as Warne’s family waits for his body to be return here following his sudden death Friday from a suspected heart attack at Koh Samui in Thailand.
‘The Age’ quoted sources as saying that Prime Minister Scott Morrison and Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews wanted to attend the state funeral. They were working to find a suitable date with Warne’s family.
Shane Warne loved the MCG and it was his favourite ground. It is the scene of his famous hat-trick against England in the Boxing Day Test in 1994. Warne took the wickets of Phil DeFreitas, Darren Gough and Devon Malcolm.
Warne has his own statue at the MCG ground. It has become a central location for fans to pay their respects with numerous flowers laid alongside beer cans of Victoria Bitter, packets of cigarettes and meat pies. The 52-year-old will also have the Southern Stand named after him, which will become the SK Warne Stand.
On the same day of Warne’s sudden demise, another Australian legend, former wicketkeeper Rodney Marsh died a week after suffering a heart attack. The Western Australian government has also offered Marsh a state funeral.