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Aussie WAGs could distract our Test players, warns ex-star Harvey

December 21, 2010 - Melbourne

Critics have warned Australian cricketers not to have their families over for the Boxing Day Ashes Test that starts from December 26, as it could affect their focus.

Former Australian batsman Neil Harvey said loved ones should definitely stay away from the MCG.

"They are a distraction there's no doubt about that. The players should get Christmas Day with them, then send them home. Let them concentrate on the game. There has been so much focus on the WAGs, especially when they start to bicker or fight. The cricketers don't need that," Harvey said.

Cricket Australia, however, plans to make the crucial Ashes clash at the MCG a family affair with Aussie WAGs arriving in Melbourne from tomorrow.

Cricket chiefs say they would "actively encourage" players' partners and their children to attend the fourth Test, with the series tied at 1-1.

"Each player has a small allocation of tickets to each game in which they play and they often also invite parents or siblings," the Daily Telegraph quoted Cricket Australia spokesman Peter Young, as saying.

"We host them in a private box, and a creche is set up for the young children. It is one of the big family days on our Test cricketers' annual calendars," Young added.

Meanwhile, English skipper Andrew Strauss has rubbished speculation in Britain that the presence of his team's WAGs had cost England victory in Perth.

The Aussies' hectic schedule of events this week includes a public event at Southbank on Thursday where fans can meet players.

The team will spend Christmas Day with their families at a private function at Crown casino.

Meanwhile, ticket sales for the MCG Test continue to surge. yesterday installed a record crowd on day one as a short-priced favourite.

The Boxing Day crowd record, set in 1961, is 90,800.


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