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‘He was just a pure heart’- Andrew Symonds’ teammates give him a emotional farewell in a memorial service

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Healy, Ponting, Gilchrist and Lehmann at Andrew Symonds' memorial service | GettyFormer Australia cricketers came together to give an emotional final farewell to Andrew Symonds at a memorial service on Friday. Symonds passed away at the age of 46 in a car accident outside Townsville, Queensland earlier this month.

Family, friends, fans, and former teammates gathered to celebrate his life at a public memorial service at a stadium in the coastal city of Townsville, where he lived. It followed a private funeral where a cricket bat, fishing rod, crab pot, and a number of hats were placed alongside the timber coffin, local media reported.

Former Australia players like Ricky Ponting, Shane Watson, Mitchell Johnson, Adam Gilchrist, Darren Lehmann, and Ian Healy turned out for the man affectionately known as ‘Roy’.

‘Wish we had one more day, one more phone call’- Andrew Symonds’ sister leaves a heartfelt note at accident site

The service was just simply beautiful. In its entirety, it was full of sadness, but just such wonderful beautiful memories of a guy that just gave so much of himself to so many people unconditionally. He was just a pure heart, found his way into trouble as well as anyone… loyal beyond belief,” Gilchrist told reporters.

Laura Symonds, wife of late Andrew Symonds | Getty

Great bloke, great teammate. If I’m picking a team tomorrow in a Test match, one-dayer or a T20 he is in my team every day of the week. He would do anything if it meant saving one run or giving his mates a better chance of winning the game. You could say that about him every time he took the field,” said Ricky Ponting.

Australian cricketers pay rich tribute to Andrew Symonds who died in a car accident

Andrew was a young teammate with a huge reputation. Supremely talented, a very hard worker. But one who didn’t find first-class cricket immediately easy. So to see him ascend to the commentary box and then to master his analysis of broadcasting and cricket in general gave me a wonderful sense of pride,” reminisced Ian Healy.

Symonds played 26 Tests and 198 one-day internationals from 1998 to 2009. He also played in the Indian Premier League. He won the 2003 and 2007 World Cups with the Australian team.

(AFP inputs)

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