Thursday, 31 May 2012

Pay Perry Properly

One of the finest athletes in the world currently is Australian dual international Ellyse Perry. She has represented her country at both the cricket and football world cups, and is a mere 21 years old. She is roughly comparable to Kiwi Sophie Devine*, a dual cricket/hockey international, only better.

Perry has recently quit her football club in Canberra because they were demanding she commit to football full time. However, in a telling remark from leading Australian footballer Melissa Barbieri, women's football coaches "want their players to be more professional, without the professional means." Essentially the point is that a woman cannot get a decent paycheck for being a star athlete, even in sports as popular as cricket or football. Equal pay? A top female cricketer or footballer would be lucky to earn 10% of a male counterpart.

This is a golden opportunity for women's cricket to secure the services of one of the brightest prospects in the game. Imagine a cricketer who had a one day bowling average of 21.97 after 47 games, with a batting average of 19.47. Such a player would command huge sums in the IPL, as well as a lucrative central contract with their national board, as well as huge endorsement deals, provided they had a penis. Alas, the player with these stats is Elysse Perry, so even though she is clearly an incredibly talented athlete, neither code is willing to offer her the sort of money required to secure her services full time.

* A quick aside about Devine, I had the misfortune of facing her a few times in matches. She bowled faster than anyone I had ever faced when I was 12, and let me tell you, when you are pissing yourself at the thought of being hit by a thunderbolt like that, you forget you are facing a girl pretty fast. She was well known around junior and high school cricket as being a destroyer of batsmen, especially the macho types. It was quite funny in hindsight remembering square jawed jocks swaggering out to the wicket and slinking back soon after, if they were lucky with only a bruised ego.


  1. Are you arguing for equal pay for male and female athletes Alex?

  2. Not necessarily, after all there is a huge disparity in crowd numbers between male and female sports.* However, it is terrible that only one gender has access to the sort of pay that enables full professionalism. I am arguing that national sporting bodies should make more cash available to women's sports such as cricket so female players can become fully professional.

    * Not tennis though, thats just flat out sexist that women aren't paid the same as men. Women's tennis is easily as popular as male tennis.