Cricket legend Greg Chappell has revealed he is going through a financial crisis with his friends pitching in to set up an online fundraising platform to “enhance his last few years”, according to a report.
The 75-year-old former Australia captain, who also had a controversial stint as the head coach of the Indian team from 2005-2007, admitted that he is doing fine but is certainly not living a life of luxury as a result of his cricketing career.
“I’m not on the bones of my a**e,” Chappell told News Corp.
“I certainly don’t want it to sound like we’re in desperate straits, because we’re not — but we’re not living in luxury either. I think most people assume that, because we played cricket, that we are all living in the lap of luxury. While I’m certainly not crying poor, we’re not reaping in the benefits that today’s players are,” he said.
According to the report, Chappell “reluctantly” agreed to a GoFundMe page being set up for him, along with a testimonial lunch held at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) last week — hosted by Eddie McGuire and attended by cricket greats, including brothers Ian and Trevor.
Chappell further said he is not the only player from his era who experienced financial difficulties, even though the landscape of professional cricket has come a long way since his retirement.
“It is just my friends who realised that we didn’t get a lot and just to make sure that Judy and I were comfortable in our retirement,” Chappell said.
“To be fair, there are others of our era who are in more dire circumstances that could do with the help and I don’t think the game has done enough for players of that era. Particularly in relation to the comparison with today’s era.” “I believe the players that set the scene for what’s happening today, should probably be recognised for the role they played in getting the game to where it is today,” Chappell added.
Pacer Dennis Lillee, wicketkeeper Rod Marsh, and Chappell were part of an iconic trio that defected to Kerry Packer’s World Series Cricket in the late 1970s.
But unlike Lillee and Marsh, Chappell didn’t receive a fundraising testimonial at the end of his career to help set him up after retiring from cricket.
A report in news.com.au quotes Chappell’s friends saying that he is doing it tougher than an Australian sporting legend ever should.
“Greg is a very proud man. He’s doing it tougher than what he says,” Chappell’s friend Peter Maloney said.
The Australian great also runs the Chappell Foundation, which raises funds for homelessness charities. But the foundation makes sure every cent is distributed each year and Chappell doesn’t keep any money for himself.
“The Chappell Foundation is run by Darshak Mehta and 100 per cent of the money that is raised gets distributed,” Maloney said.
“They distribute it annually so at the end of each year, they don’t leave any money and they’re starting afresh.” “If you put your name to a foundation you’re entitled to take some money out of it. But Greg hasn’t taken a cent out of it, even though he could have.
“I guess that was the irony that he was the face of it and turning up to every function and he’s raising all this money while he didn’t have a hell of a lot himself.
“Put it this way, we will probably end up raising about $250,000 out of it, and it will significantly enhance his last few years,” Maloney added.
Chappell scored 24 centuries across 87 Tests during the 1970s and 80s and led Australia 48 times. He retired from Tests in January 1984 as the highest run-getter (7110) in Australian Test history, surpassing Sir Donald Bradman’s record of 6996 runs.
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