David Warner will box a kangaroo as part of the World Cup opening ceremony in Melbourne, organisers have revealed.

"The Boxing Kangaroo has long been a proud symbol of Australian sporting culture and character, and David Warner is… well, never mind what David Warner is," said World Cup 2015 CEO John Harnden, who went on to explain that the decision to pit Warner against a fully grown 200-pound adult male marsupial was taken after realising the tournament needed "something drastic and out of the box" if it was going to top Katy Perry riding that massive tiger thingy during the recent Superbowl half-time show.

"We bandied about a few potential names, but in the end there was only one logical candidate we could think of who would even agree to do such a thing," he added. "As it turns out, we were right."

"When organisers first approached us with the idea, we were a little apprehensive that by allowing the fight to happen, we ran the risk of having Warner suffer the abject humiliation of, well, being knocked out by a kangaroo on the eve of the World Cup," admitted Australia coach Darren Lehmann. "But then we quickly realised that by allowing the fight to happen, we ran the risk of having Warner suffer the abject humiliation of, well, being knocked out by a kangaroo on the eve of the World Cup."

As Michael Clarke explained, "We figured that if that roo were able to slap some sense into Davey, it just might do him some good in the long run by knocking the fight out of him once and for all. We wouldn't have to live in constant fear of him attacking another player at some point during the tournament. Martin Crowe could rest easy."

But Warner, who has hired Andrew Symonds to help him prepare for the bout, has other ideas. "I'm going to eat that fresh-faced bastard for breakfast," he snarled. "I'm going to knock the teeth right out of that pretty face, and I'm going to make sure that Joey never so much as thinks about cricket again without remembering what I'm about to do to him," he said, punching his fists together.

"What?" Warner added sharply, upon being informed that it wasn't Root that he would be boxing, but a roo.

Other highlights to look forward to during the ceremony are:

New Zealand in the house
In the interests of equal representation, a cricketer from co-hosts New Zealand (at press time it was still undecided who this might be, though sources indicate Daniel Vettori is emerging as the strong favourite) will take the stage to stroke his facial hair with a frond of silver fern for about, oh, a half-hour or so.

AC/DC to perform
Yep, you heard it here first, folks. This is the "special event" that organisers have been promising and trying to keep under wraps for as long as was humanly possible. This will mark the first time that the Asian Community Development Corporation will participate in an event of this magnitude. Their time on stage at the ceremony will kick off with a cultural programme, followed by a speech highlighting the various contributions that the Asian-Australian community has made to the nation and a request for donations. Don't forget to stick around for samosas after!

Mascot
The official mascot of the tournament, Pedro the Non-Straightening Bowling Arm, will lead the players out during the Parade of Nations. (Associate-member nations to march out only after the Full-Member nations, and only if there's still time.)

Speech
Parade of Nations to be followed by traditional World Cup opening ceremony speech addressed to the gathered crowd and players by Kevin Pietersen, who will talk about Kevin Pietersen in his new role as commentator, and how Kevin Pietersen would obviously love to have been a part of the England World Cup team but is just happy to be there, you know?

Artistic part of the show
During which thousands of highly trained and well-rehearsed performers will create a massive beer snake and use it to depict various colourful scenes of absolute chaos.

Regular camera cutaways from the ceremony to some washed-up Bollywood star waving from the stands with a vaguely constipated look on his face.

Ashish Nehra to join Pitbull on stage
Organisers are busy trying to negotiate terms with Nehra to do for Pitbull - who will be fulfilling his contractual obligations to perform at any and every ICC event until he dies of bald old age - what "Left Shark" did for Katy Perry during the Superbowl half-time performance. "Ashish is blessed with the same lack of coordination as any fish out of water," explained an organiser cannily.

R Rajkumar tweets @roundarmraj