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Shane Warne memorial live: MCG updates, start time, Liz Hurley cameo

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Eddie McGuire has revealed the moment Shane Warne’s death really hit home ahead of tonight’s public memorial at the MCG.

A crowd of more than 50,000 will gather at the MCG tonight to farewell cricket legend Shane Warne.

There’s been an outpouring of grief since the Spin King died after suffering a heart attack aged 52 in Thailand earlier this month, but the focus of his public memorial will be on celebrating a life most could only dream of.

Eddie McGuire will act as master of ceremonies and details have started to filter out about what we can expect from tonight’s event, such as who will perform and what tributes will take place.

Greta Bradman, the granddaughter of cricket icon Sir Donald Bradman, will sing the national anthem.

The memorial is scheduled to start at 7pm (AEDT). It will be broadcast live on Fox Cricket and every major Australian TV network.

Cricket icons arrive at the MCG

Former teammates and opponents have arrived at the MCG ahead of Shane Warne’s public memorial.

Along with the cricket icons, several high-profile celebrities are expected to attend, including Russell Crowe, Hugh Jackman, James Packer, Eric Bana, Greg Norman and Kelly Slater.

Warne realisation hits home for Eddie

Shane Warne’s son Jackson said there is no better place to bid farewell to his late father than the MCG, where his memorial will be beamed live to cricket grounds around the country and watched by millions in Australia and around the world.

Jackson said there was “no other better place in the whole world” to hold the memorial than the MCG, where Warne created so many memories, including his Ashes hat-trick and 700th Test wicket.

“It’s very special for a lot of us, especially our family,” Jackson said.

“We’ve been lucky enough to come here (to the MCG) our whole lives and watch him play and put lots of hard work in on this very ground.

“Dad always loved a crowd, putting on a performance … I think, sad day as it is, with more people here it won’t be as sad.”

The Warne family has encouraged those attending to wear cricket gear — be it their own club whites, Australian jerseys or the leg-spin legend’s famous No. 23 jersey.

Warne’s close friend Eddie McGuire said the cricket great’s loss really hit home while conducting a dress rehearsal on Tuesday night.

“There were a couple of times where a bit of video went up and it suddenly hit me right between the eyes,” McGuire told The Today Show.

“You get into the mode of talking about these things and the family have given so much of themselves and suddenly it hits and you go, ‘He’s gone’.”

The Great Southern Stand at the MCG will be named after Warne, with new signage to be unveiled this evening.

Warne’s father Keith and kids Jackson, Summer and Brooke will all speak at the memorial.

“It’s what he would’ve wanted, to make sure everybody who can be involved is involved and we’ve been very fortunate to have a state funeral to allow us to do that,” Keith said.

Music stars Elton John, Chris Martin, Robbie Williams and Sheeran will sing “dedicated songs” to Warne, said McGuire. Martin — a great mate of Warne — wrote a song especially for the occasion, called “The Eulogy”, which will be played tonight.

Those musical icons are expected to appear by video link, as are Hollywood stars Russell Crowe and Hugh Jackman.

Cricketing greats such as Brian Lara, Ian Botham and Wasim Akram will be among an array of sports stars joining the service.

Warne’s former fiancee, British actress Liz Hurley, won’t attend the MCG but will feature in the service.

Order of service

Welcome to Country — Wurundjeri Elder

Master of Ceremonies — Mr Eddie McGuire

Australian National Anthem — Ms Greta Bradman

Family Tribute — Mr Keith Warne

Panel hosted by Mr Mark Howard

Mr Mark Taylor AO, Mr Allan Border AO,

Mr Merv Hughes, Mr Nasser Hussain OBE and

Mr Brian Lara TC OCC AM

Reflection — Ms Andrea Egan

Performance — Mr Jon Stevens

Panel hosted by Mr Andy Lee

Mr Dimitri Mascarenhas, Mr Aaron Hamill,

Mr Glenn Robbins and Mr Sam Newman

Family Tributes

Mr Jason Warne, Ms Summer Warne,

Mr Jackson Warne and Ms Brooke Warne

Performance

Mr Anthony Callea

Service concludes



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