Spin legend Shane Warne Monday announced plans to auction the “beloved” baggy green cap he wore throughout his 145-Test cricket career to raise money for victims of bushfires raging in Australia.
The “baggy green” is awarded to Australian players when they make their debut and is worn as a badge of pride when they are on the field.
Given Warne’s exploits on the field and his high profile off it, local media predicted it could fetch up to Aus$500,000 (US$345,000).
Warne, who took more than 700 Test wickets, said he wanted to help those who have suffered in the catastrophic fires that have devastated parts of the country.
“The horrific bushfires in Australia have left us all in disbelief. The impact these devastating fires are having on so many people is unthinkable and has touched us all,” he said on Instagram.
“Everyone is in this together and we continue to find ways to contribute and help on a daily basis.”
He said that is why he decided to auction off his “beloved green cap”.
The devastating fires, which have so far claimed 24 lives and destroyed more than 1,800 homes, have sparked an outpouring of generosity from sports stars in Australia.
Fellow cricketers Chris Lynn, Glenn Maxwell and D’Arcy Short have pledged to donate Aus$250 for every six they smash during the ongoing Big Bash League Twenty20 tournament.
Top tennis players have also got involved, with world number one Ashleigh Barty donating her winnings from this week’s Brisbane International to the Red Cross.
Fellow Australian Nick Kyrgios, among others, have promised Aus$200 for each ace they serve during the home summer of tennis.
A “Rally for Relief” exhibition match at Rod Laver Arena in Melbourne is due to take place on January 15 ahead of the Australian Open, with “the world’s top players” taking part.