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Benaud family declines state funeral offer

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Sydney, April 12:

The family of the late former Australian cricket captain and legendary cricket commentator Richie Benaud has declined Prime Minister Tony Abbott’s proposal for a state funeral.

pic: www.telegraph.co.uk
pic: www.telegraph.co.uk

Benaud’s widow Daphne informed the prime minister’s office on Saturday to “kindly decline” the offer. Benaud, 84, died on Thursday. His family has arranged for a private funeral attended only by his immediate family, bbc.co reported.

The commentator himself had wished for “something very, very quiet and very, very private”, Abbott was quoted as saying by bbc.com on Sunday.

“I thought it was important that as a mark of the respect that we have long had for him that we should offer a state funeral,” he added.

“But my understanding is that Richie’s own wishes were for something very, very quiet, and something very, very private.”

Benaud played in 63 Tests, captaining 28 of them, before retiring in 1964 to pursue a highly-successful career in journalism and broadcasting. (IANS)