The great Andrew Carnegie believed life has two phases: The first should go in accumulating wealth, and the second to use the same for charitable purposes. And that is indeed why we respect the genial individuals, who apart from their cricketing skill, are known for the moral side of them too. Here is the list of the Top 10 most philanthropic cricketers of the world.
Top 10 most philanthropic cricketers of the world
Only playing cricket can make a cricketer legend of utmost fame, but their moral support to common people make them icons. Let us take a look at the prominent names.
One of the England’s greatest all-rounder of all time has been a truly deserving candidate among our Top 10 most philanthropic cricketers of the world. His charitable efforts included a visit to the hospital to treat a broken toe when he had mistakenly entered into a children’s ward. He was really shaken to hear that some of the children had only days to live. Since then, he has amassed more than £12 million for charity. Leukaemia research was among the principal beneficiaries. In 2003 he had become the first-ever President of Leukemia Research, the UK’s leading blood cancer charity. His remarkable charitable efforts, along with his cricketing legacy, made him a pioneer among philanthropic cricketers. It also earned him a knighthood in 2007 from Queen Elizabeth II herself.
Imran Khan is one of the few cricketers who moved to politics after their amazing career in cricket. And very few cricketers have done for the lesser-privileged part of the society as Imran has, especially for his countrymen. Shaukat Khanum Memorial Trust is a state-of-the-art charitable organisation in the memory of his mother. It provides free medical care for thousands since inception back in 1994. Imran established the hospital in his mother’s honour. And he did so by raising donations exceeding $25 million from all around the world. The institution has spent over RS 12 billion helping thousands of poor cancer patients. Seven years ago, he has also established a technical college in the Mianwali District called Namal College. He rightly stands at the 9th position among Top 10 most philanthropic cricketers of the world.
The Ponting Foundation is yet another stunning effort by a cricketer to support families beat cancer. It was back in 2002. A good friend of the Children’s Cancer Institute Australia (CCIA) invited the Pontings to visit the Sydney Children’s Hospital. They wanted them to meet the many children and their families in the oncology ward. The stuff that they within the oncology ward rocked the Pontings. They sat tearfully outside the hospital and made a commitment to embetter the lives of young Australians with cancer. The Ponting Foundation was a testament to that commitment of this most successful cricket captain of all time, and it has surely propelled him in this list of Top 10 most philanthropic cricketers of the world.
Like Imran and McGrath’s interest in work for cancer sprouted from losing close family members, Mahela Jaywardene’s story is almost the same. His sincere efforts to help alleviate the sufferings of people afflicted with the cursed disease was born after the demise of his brother to cancer. Jaywardene, one of the most iconic charitable figures of cricket, is a huge supporter of HOPE cancer project. He has astounding plans to build Sri Lanka’s first-ever cancer hospital, a staggering 750-bed cancer unit at Maharagama, a suburb in Colombo. At 7, Mahela is a true inspiration in the list of the Top 10 most philanthropic cricketers of the world.
Muttiah Muralitharan had established the Foundation of Goodness in the early 2000s. The foundation supports the needs of the locals in the sectors like education, health care, housing, livelihood etc. Murali has warm supports in his noble cause by several cricketers in Sri Lankan, Australia and England. Murali now has his focus on building a one million dollar sports complex for war-displaced civilians in Mankulam. It’s a town located 300 kilometers from north of Colombo. The project aims at building a sports center, a school, English and IT training centers and also an elders’ home. Murali is also an ambassador for the United Nations’ World Food Programme.
Yuvraj Raj Singh is the only cricketer who focused on charity in a massive way. He is one of the most famous cricketers who escaped death, and after winning his mythical battle with cancer, Yuvraj Singh formed the “YouWeCan”. It has a very alert initiative to tackle cancer at the premature stage. The aim of the initiative is interestingly twofold: To create awareness and erase the socio- psychological stigma attached with cancer. And it also provides mobile cancer examination stations within the reach of masses in order to make routine check- ups a habit. Yuvraj is truly a testimony to the brilliance of the list of Top 10 most philanthropic cricketers of the world.
Following in the footsteps of Imran Khan, Shahid Afridi established a charitable trust, which leads him an honourable mention in the list of most charitable cricketers. He had the objective to provide basic healthcare and education to the masses of Pakistan. The Shahid Afridi Foundation saw its establishment in March 2014 and the core concept behind it is: Charity laced with absolute philanthropy. The hospital serves the underprivileged people of Kohat, with little or practically no means to basic medical healthcare. It’s a maternity hospital in Tangi Banda, Kohat. And it provides free treatment, medicines and cares for patients. He deserves the spot in this list of Top 10 most philanthropic cricketers of the world.
It’s his wife Jane’s suffering from breast cancer at the young age of 31, resulting in her death, that led to the birth of the McGrath Foundation. It is one of Australia’s leading breast cancer support organisations with over 33,000 Australian families supported. “Glenn and I were inspired to create the McGrath Foundation in 2002 after my initial recovery from breast cancer so we could help other Australian women touched by breast cancer. However, it was in 2003 when I was re-diagnosed that I realised the importance of having a breast care nurse, something I was fortunate enough to have access to for the first time. Someone who could answer the questions only a nurse could answer whilst also being the support I needed to unload my frustrations and emotions,” said founder Jane in her message on the McGrath foundation’s website.
Steve Waugh’s efforts to help to raise funds for the rehabilitation of leprosy afflicted children of Udayan, in Kolkata is truly remarkable. It has caused his popularity in a section thousands of miles away from his own country, in a different continent, as a visionary among the charitable cricketers. For the 300-odd children, Waugh is Father Teresa. In 2009, Waugh also opened the India chapter of the Steve Waugh Foundation. It aims at improving the lives of children suffering from the rare diseases. “India gave me this life-changing moment when I met Mother Teresa in Kolkata. Mother Teresa was a catalyst,” Waugh said at the inauguration. Steve will undoubtedly remain at his stoic position in the list of Top 10 most philanthropic cricketers of the world.
The greatest cricketing legend prefers to do these things quietly. But we know that he is a huge supporter of Apnalaya. It’s an NGO which is close to his mother-in-law, Annabel. She has dedicated four decades of her life to Apnalaya and is now happens to be the NGO’s president. Tendulkar sponsors about 200 underprivileged children each year through Apnalaya. In 2013, along with AishwaryaRai, Tendulkar helped the Coca-Cola-NDTV ‘Support My School’ campaign to raise a staggering Rs 13.6 crore. It had usage towards the revitalisation of 272 schools across India. Take a bow, Little Master!
Their legacy will be immortal, and their deeds cherished. We pay our utmost respect and tribute to our favourite players in the list of the most philanthropic cricketers of the world.