It’s an interesting proposition; the money or the box containing a baggy green cap?
An Australian Cricketers’ Association (ACA) survey appearing in News Limited papers at the weekend found that 92% of respondents believed a baggy green cap was more important than a $1 million contract with an Indian Premier League franchise.
110 current international and state players were surveyed and if you believe the results then the shortest form of the game doesn’t mean as much as it used to.
Last year, according to ACA chief executive Paul Marsh, 64% answered baggy green cap and 36% a $1m deal.
The question is which sample of players do you believe?
Faced with the same choice which box would you have ticked?
Surely you would have to be torn.
The child in you who played backyard cricket with your mates until the sun went down and dinner hit the table would find it a ridiculous question.
The baggy green cap was invaluable, sacred and the ultimate symbol of sporting significance.
Phar Lap could win a million Melbourne Cups, but you’d rather see Sir Donald Bradman stroll out to the middle of the Sydney Cricket Ground with his baggy green on.
For younger Roarers think Makybe Diva and Ricky Ponting.
The adult in you would be concerned about mortgages, bills and the ever decreasing time on the career clock.
You could be one injury away from having the word “former” placed before your profession.
$1m to the adult looks incredibly enticing. The figure seems like something straight out of fantasy land, but the opportunity is real and present.
That same amount of money to a child is meaningless. Nothing could match the prestige of that cap.
Have 92% of those 110 current international and state players rediscovered that childlike love of cricket again?
Was this year’s group less mercenary in nature than the class of 2011?
Have players had enough of Test cricket being treated as a way to kill time between T20 games rather than the other way around?
The realisation that a payday of such proportions is reserved for a select few might’ve set in, but that wasn’t the question.
The question had to be answered as if everyone was Chris Gayle or Shane Watson.
If 92% of the group of 110 players had the ability of those two men I’d find it extremely hard to believe such a large number would take the baggy green over the money.
It’s not impossible to have successful T20 and test careers, but it’s extremely difficult.
Even the sight of Phil Hughes freeing the arms for the Adelaide Strikers last night made me slightly uncomfortable.
He smacked 74 off 48 balls as the Strikers beat the Perth Scorchers in the Big Bash League.
It was a great knock, but on Friday Australia will need him to be slightly more restrained and responsible with his time at the wicket as the Aussies take on Sri Lanka in the first Test.
Would a champion golfer tinker with their swing a week out from the Masters?
It’s the way the modern game works though.
Which brings us back to the original question: Would 92% of you really take the baggy green cap over $1m dollars?