Rain hits cricket's star-studded bushfire fundraiser

The game was scheduled as a curtain-raiser to the T20 Big Bash League final, but with downpours expected CA said it would no longer be possible.

Shane Warne and Ricky Ponting were due to come out of retirement to skipper the teams to raise money for victims of the blazes.   -  GETTY IMAGES

A star-studded charity game at the Sydney Cricket Ground on Saturday to aid Australian bushfire relief has been called off because torrential rain is expected.

Shane Warne and Ricky Ponting were due to come out of retirement to skipper the teams to raise money for victims of the blazes which began in September and have left at least 33 people dead and thousands of homes destroyed.

The game was scheduled as a curtain-raiser to the Twenty20 Big Bash League final, but with downpours expected Cricket Australia (CA) said it would no longer be possible.

“Change of plans! To ensure the SCG is in the best possible condition for the BBL final, we've made the call to not go ahead with Saturday's Bushfire Cricket Bash at the SCG,” CA tweeted late Wednesday.

CA added that alternative options for the charity game were being considered, with 20,000 tickets sold within just 24 hours for the expected double-header.

International legends including Wasim Akram, Brian Lara, Sachin Tendulkar and Courtney Walsh were set to be involved, along with the likes of former Australia stars Adam Gilchrist, Brett Lee, Michael Clarke, Shane Watson and Justin Langer.

All match profits and funds would go to the Australian Red Cross Disaster Relief and Recovery Fund.

The Sydney Sixers will face either the Melbourne Stars or Sydney Thunder in the BBL final, weather permitting.

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