Sports stars pledge help for Queensland flood victims
Australia's Shaun Tait collected money at the Twenty20 game against England
A number of leading sports stars from around the globe are donating or raising money to help victims of the Queensland floods in Australia.
Tennis players, including Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer, will play exhibition matches at Melbourne Park on Sunday.
England cricketer Kevin Pietersen is auctioning an Ashes shirt and bat while Australian spin legend Shane Warne is trying to organise a Twenty20 game.
And seven-time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong will donate $50,000.
The American cyclist is in Australia for next week's Tour Down Under.
He said on his
"Thoughts go out to everyone in Queensland who've been touched by the recent flooding. Hang in there!"
The first Grand Slam of the tennis season, the Australian Open, also begins next week and world number three Novak Djokovic will be joining Nadal and Federer, the top two ranked players, in the "Rally for Relief" event at the Rod Laver Arena.
Play starts at 0300 GMT, with Belgian Kim Clijsters and Australians Lleyton Hewitt and Sam Stosur also turning out.
Australian Pat Rafter, who along with Stosur is helping organise the event, said: "The plight of the flood victims has struck a chord with the entire tennis fraternity.
"As a Queenslander I am really heartened by the concern and the keenness from our sport to get in and do something to ease the suffering."
Fellow Queenslander Stosur is already donating Aus $100 (£63) for every ace she serves in Australian tournaments this summer.
Former world number one Hewitt added: "As an Australian I cannot help but be touched by such an awful turn of events. It is a disaster on a massive scale.
Meanwhile, Warne announced via his
that he is attempting to organise a charity Twenty20 match between his XI and a team led by former England captain Michael Vaughan at the Melbourne Cricket Ground featuring former players and celebrities.
Australia all-rounder Shane Watson, whose home town of Ipswich in Queensland has been affected by the floods, said: "Over the past couple of days for me personally it has put things into perspective of exactly what cricket means and what life means with all the devastation.
"I'm going to be joining with Cricket Australia and the Australian Cricketers' Association to do everything I possibly can to make sure that, for me personally, Ipswich is looked after. It is my home town.
"I'll be getting in contact with the mayor once things subside a little bit and see what I can do."
Everton and Australia midfielder Tim Cahill has put an "experience" up for auction on
to raise money.
The highest bidder will receive two business class flights from their closest airport to an Everton game with a meal in Cahill's personal box at Goodison Park, a chance to meet the squad and a signed shirt and boots.
"It's something I can do to show my support and hopefully make a difference," Cahill told BBC Radio Merseyside.
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