Tennis stars unite for ‘Rally for Relief’ for Oz flood victims

Friday, January 14, 2011

MELBOURNE - Tennis stars who are in Melbourne for the Australian Open, will take part in a charity event, ‘Rally for Relief’, to help the flood victims of Queensland.

Tennis Australia has organised the televised event, which will be held at Melbourne Park on Sunday, ahead of the Australian Open starting on Monday.

The international tennis stars include Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer, Novak Djokavic, Samantha Stosur, Pat Rafter and Jim Courier.

British tennis star Andy Murray and Belgian champion Kim Clijsters are the latest to extend support to flood victims.

“The flooding over here has not only caused widespread devastation, but has also led to loss of life, I’d like to send my condolences to everyone affected,” quoted Murray, as saying.

“I wanted to help out as soon as I heard about the exhibition on Sunday, we want to do our part in helping everyone who is suffering during this difficult time,” he added.

Clijsters, who was equally concerned, said: “Over the last few days I think we’ve all be glued to the television, and a lot of those flood images are stuck in my head. You can’t forget them.”

“We’re here competing, playing a tournament, but not far from you, there are so many people struggling and trying just to survive. So, I think it is up to us, and by us I mean the players, public, fans, tournaments and sponsors to come together and raise funds so we can help out the people who have to rebuild their lives,” she added.

Funds raised from the event will go towards those affected by Queensland’s worst ever natural disaster, with hopes to raise one million dollars.

A similar fundraiser was organised by Tennis Australia last year in support of victims of the Haiti earthquake disaster, with “Hit for Haiti” raising some 200,000 dollars in funds.

Raging floodwaters have swamped thousands of homes and businesses in Queensland, leaving at least 25 people dead and over 100 missing since late November.

Rail lines and highways have been washed away in what is shaping up to become Australia’s costliest natural disaster. (ANI)

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