Les Murray, the revered football commentator and broadcaster who died aged 71 on Monday after a long period of battling illness, will be given a NSW state funeral for his "tireless and passionate advocacy" of the sport and his efforts with Australia's multicultural community.
NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian announced on August 1 that the host of SBS's 'The World Game' program for many years would be given the state procession and offered her condolences to his family and friends.
Les Murray's family have accepted the NSW Government's offer of a State Funeral, a fitting tribute for a wonderful Australian. pic.twitter.com/uKkWNQo67g— Gladys Berejiklian (@GladysB) August 1, 2017
On Monday, it was confirmed that the funeral will be held on August 14 at St Mary's Cathedral in Sydney, with doors to be opened at 10am for an 11am start. All guests are also urged to take their seats by 10:45am and are encouraged to wear white as a celebration of Murray's life at the request of his family.
"On behalf of the people of NSW I extend my deepest sympathies to Les Murray's family, friends and colleagues," Berejiklian said last week.
"Thanks in large part to Les's tireless and passionate advocacy, football is now one of the most popular sports in the country and part of our mainstream sporting consciousness.
"But Les's good work was not limited to sport alone. Les, who came to Australia as a refugee from Hungary, was an inspiration to many communities across our multicultural society. Les epitomised the post-war generations of migrants who helped make Australia what it is today. Les passionately embraced his new life and gave back to his community in spades."
The announcement comes after fans, friends and colleagues voiced their support for a state funeral for the veteran broadcaster, dubbed 'Mr Football', in the hours after his death.
From Murray's long-term SBS reporting partner Craig Foster to Federal Opposition leader Bill Shorten, the calls came from far and wide -- and now they've been met.
Les Murray AM deserves State funeral for unparalleled contribution to Aust life. Please join me in calling on Govt to farewell the great man— Craig Foster (@Craig_Foster) August 1, 2017
I hope the state govt offer Les Murray's family a state funeral. He deserves nothing less than the full symphony of tribute and respect.— Bill Shorten (@billshortenmp) July 31, 2017
I just emailed Gladys Berejiklian @GladysB and called her office requesting that a State Funeral is at least offered to the family.— Football Roos (@football_roos) August 1, 2017
Berejiklian's decision also comes after organisers of the national knockout tournament, the Football Federation Australia (FFA) Cup, also announced a moment's silence will be held at all Round of 32 matches held on Tuesday night and players will wear black armbands to honour the late commentator.
Murray was the host of 'The World Game' until his retirement in 2014, and was inducted into the Football Federation Australia Hall of Fame in 2003. Born "László Ürge" in Hungary before emigrating to Australia as a young boy and refugee, he made it his life's work to bring the passion of Europe to Australian football.
Murray is survived by his partner and two daughters.