Media Release

Aussie and Sri Lankan cricketers unite to raise funds for tsunami survivors in Sri Lanka

Cricket celebrities and Sydney Swans players teamed up to announce their participation in the charity event “Cricketers Walk For Sri Lanka Tsunami Victims”, which will take place on Sunday January 23 around Sydney’s Centennial Park.

The announcement was made by the Sri Lanka Disaster Relief Fund at a press conference held in partnership with Cricket NSW, Cricket Australia, the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) Trust and Centennial Parklands.

A centrepiece attraction in the lead up to the One Day between Australia vs Pakistan, the walk will see some of cricket’s biggest names make a grand entrance into the SCG prior to the match to encourage cash donations from the crowd.

Legendary cricketers including Mark Waugh, Brendan Julian, Shane Lee, Michael Slater and many others with Sri Lanka’s Marvan Atapattu and Mahela Jayawardene will make the journey into the SCG following the walk in Centennial Park.

“The recent events in South East Asia have made us all realise how fragile life is. If somehow cricketers can play a small part by supporting events such as this and help make a difference then I am proud to be involved,” said Michael Clarke.

Cricket and AFL fans of all ages and their family/friends are invited to pitch in and join their idols on the fundraising walk to help people in Sri Lanka affected by the tsunami.

David Gilbert, chief executive of Cricket NSW says around 5,000 to 10,000 people are anticipated to attend. “It’s a fantastic cause that Cricket NSW is proud to support. The public can pledge their support by joining the walk, where they can meet the sports stars and help raise the much-needed funds,” he said.

Community festivities planned as part of the event include live entertainment and Sri Lankan and Indian food stalls in the park.

Sri Lankan-born Harry Solomons, managing director of Kingsgrove Sports Centre is the mastermind behind the walk concept. “This is a great opportunity for cricketers of our great land to show their care and support to the cricket loving-nation of Sri Lanka. I am absolutely overwhelmed by the generosity of our cricket community in the effort to help people in Sri Lanka.

“The support from the cricketing bodies and Centennial Parklands has been tremendous in coordinating this event. I would like to officially thank all those involved, including the cricketers and AFL players who have collaborated to give up their time for those in need,” Mr Solomons said.

The “Cricketers Walk For Sri Lanka Tsunami Victims” is supported by Cricket NSW, Cricket Australia, the SCG Trust, Centennial Parklands and the Sydney Swans AFL Club.

“Centennial Parklands has a great history of supporting charities over the years. The Centennial Park and Moore Park Trust is pleased to have an opportunity be a part of this important event,” said Steve Corbett, director of Centennial Parklands.

Proceeds from the walk will be directed towards the Sri Lanka Disaster Relief Fund, a registered charity committed to helping tsunami victims in Sri Lanka in need of aid. Additionally, a portion of monies raised will be donated to World Vision.

Participating cricketers:

Jason Gillespie, Brett Lee, Allan Border, Mark Waugh, Michael Slater, Alan Davidson, Brian Booth , Greg Matthews, Geoff Lawson, David Gilbert, Trevor Chappell, Brendon Julien, Shane Lee, Rick McCosker, Brian Taber, Bob Holland, Phil Emery, Anthony Stuart, Wayne Holdsworth, Gavin Robertson, Brad McNamara, Neil Maxwell, Richard Chee Quee, David Hourn, David Freedman

Sri Lankan Cricketers:
Captain Marvan Atapattu and vice captain Mahela Jayawardene

The Sydney Swans AFL squad will also be in attendance including Coach Paul Roos and Captain Stuart Maxfield