Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Charity drive for Queensland

Normally at this stage of an England cricket tour, I would be writing a piece about how desperately boring it is that a thrilling series of Test matches should be followed by one unmemorable one-day match after another, but some good may yet come from the two Twenty20 matches and seven 50-over games.

England's players have agreed to donate part of their match fees from this morning's match to the Queensland flood relief and after the game players from both sides went into the crowd to press the flesh and pass the donations bucket. With 40,000 spectators, it is hoped that a fair bit was raised.

Charity is to continue. Kevin Pietersen has said he will auction his Ashes shirt and bat for the flood relief effort, while Shane Warne and Darren Gough are arranging a match between "legends" to raise more money. New South Wales cricket team has agreed to donate the gate receipts from their match with Queensland the day before England play Australia in Brisbane on January 29.

It is easy to forget that natural disasters hurt developed countries just as much as third world countries. People rightly give money when there are floods in Bangladesh or hurricanes in the Caribbean, but the disruption to life and the cost of remedying it in Queensland after these floods - which have covered an area the size of France and Germany - is just as great, probably greater. Those who have a quality of life miss it more when it is taken away.

It is heartwarming that in the aftermath of the Ashes victory and a few days after the multimillion-dollar auction for the Indian Premier League, cricketers and cricket fans can dig deep to help our fellow humans in need.


Peter McGuinness said...

Thanks for the thoughts Patrick. It's difficult to describe the colossal scope of the devastation down here. Many towns simply washed away. Many large regional cities like Toowoomba, Ipswich and Rockhampton submerged. And now even Brisbane and it's 2 million citizens inundated and wrecked. Agriculture, mining, tourism, major infrastructure - destroyed from the far north to the NSW border. Millions of lives ruined. The floodwaters will eventually subside, but the reconstruction and recovery will take years and cost billions. All Queenslanders are deeply affected. People like me who have escaped property and physical harm invariably have many many friends, relatives and colleagues who have had their lives thrust into despair and chaos. Its still a dreadful worry that the wet season isn't over and that there may well be worse ahead before the end of March. On the lighter and happier side: The Gabba is now an island but remains playable and has escaped the catastrophe that visited the legendary home of Rugby - Suncorp Stadium. Perhaps more importantly Patrick - the XXXX Brewery has miraculously remained operational despite being submerged to it's upper levels. You beauty - under the circumstances, it's bloody hard to imagine a more essential service! Deliveries are already being dispatched by boat! Overall it's very emotional. Every Queenslander is a fanatically proud and parochial person. It's genuinely heartbreaking to have our beloved state laid so low. There's genuine grief permeating the whole place. Grief and also a stoic resolve. We'll bounce back though - that's for sure. Again - thanks for the post mate, most appreciated.

vipul barad said...

Its nice to know that Eng's players have agreed to donate part of their match fees for Queensland. Even Ind-SA players wear black strip on their jersey to show their support and sympathy during 1st one day match.