Shane Warne may have made the white floppy his signature, but it was his baggy green No.350 that raised over a million dollars for those affected by the Australia bushfires.
Warne, who pledged during the New Year’s Test against New Zealand to auction his cap for charity, was successful in raising AUD 1,007,500, with proceeds going to the Australian Red Cross Disaster Relief and Recovery Fund.
It broke the previous record for a baggy green: one of Donald Bradman’s caps had fetched AUD 425,000 when auctioned off for charity in 2003.
The winning bid came from “MC” from Sydney, later revealed to be Commonwealth Bank, one of Cricket Australia’s partners.
Thankyou so much to everyone that placed a bid & a huge Thankyou / congrats to the successful bidder – you have blown me away with your generosity and this was way beyond my expectations ! The money will go direct to the Red Cross bushfire appeal. Thankyou, Thankyou, Thankyou ❤️ pic.twitter.com/vyVcA7NfGs
— Shane Warne (@ShaneWarne) January 9, 2020
England’s Michael Vaughan was one of those who put in an early bid, ready to fork out AUD 25,000 for the memorabilia.
The bank said they would take the cap of the second-highest wicket-taker in Tests on a nationwide tour to raise further funds for victims of the fires that have devastated large parts of Australia. It will then become a permanent exhibit at the Bradman Museum at Bowral.
“I want to thank and commend Shane for giving up one of his most cherished possessions for such an important cause,” CEO Matt Comyn (understood to be ‘MC’) said. “He has demonstrated the same Aussie spirit we are seeing across the country with acts of generosity and dedication throughout this disaster as communities rally to support each other.”
Class from the likes of Maxwell, Lynn and Short.https://t.co/pLTWEJlawx
— Wisden (@WisdenCricket) January 3, 2020
“The horrific bushfires in Australia have left us all in disbelief,” Warne had written while announcing the auction. “Lives have been lost, homes have been destroyed and over 500 million animals have died too. Everyone is in this together … This has lead me to auction of my beloved baggy green cap (350) that I wore throughout my Test career (when I wasn’t wearing my white floppy hat) [sic].”
Warne’s is one of several initiatives to raise money to address a crisis that has left a trail of devastation. BBL players had promised to donate funds for sixes hit and wickets taken, while Cricket Australia too paid tribute and announced fundraising efforts.