Clarke, Bingle 'surprised and embarrassed by public attention'

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London, Aug.18 (ANI): Australian middle order batsman Michael Clarke says he and fianc‚e Lara Bingle laugh when they're photographed on their daily round, but realize that as sporting stars they should be good role models.

He admits he is sometimes embarrassed by the attention paid to him and Bingle, but he accepts it is part of life as a top sportsman.

"We get embarrassed when some things appear in the papers," Clarke told The Australian yesterday as he prepared for the Ashes-deciding Test at the Oval, beginning on Thursday.

"Who cares? There are a million things going on in the world,much bigger things than me and Lara picking up dog poo from my balcony. We're at a stage now where we laugh at that sort of stuff," he added.

"Lara takes the dog for a walk, she doesn't do it to get her photo taken, she does it to take the dogs for a walk. But we accept that sometimes people are going to write about it.

"And the media is a big part of professional sportsmen and models making money as well, so you have to understand there are both sides to it. There are plenty of positives, don't get me wrong, but there are times when we wish we could be left alone," Clarke said.

Clarke, 28, and the Australian vice-captain, has long held the mantra that being a professional sportsman involves a lot more than just going out onto the field and performing.

He played rugby league for nine years as a junior but refused to pass judgment on any sport or individual.

"That is part of your job. It's part of playing cricket for your country. It's part of the responsibility," Clarke said.

"I'm not sitting here saying I've never done anything wrong but I just think there's more to representing your country than what you do on the field. (ANI)

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