What is the Baggy Green?

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If you weren't to sure what I mean by The Baggy Green (hopefully you're just new to the game!), it is a dark Green cap with the Australian Coat of arms on the front which is issued to every Australian cricketer who debut's in a Test match.

While viewed as nothing more than a part of the uniform back in the day, the brilliant cricketer Steve 'Tugga' Waugh (Cap #335) took the pride, respect, and symbolism of the Baggy Green to a new level that to this day places a special aura amongst the moment a player receives their Baggy Green or puts it on before heading off onto the playing field.

The eventual well worn Baggy Green will apparently have the trademark smell of alcohol from champagne and beer spills resulting from victory celebrations (plenty of that during the 90s), characterised with a faded green from wear and tear in travel bags and sun exposure, with material tatters - resembling battle scars.

This cap resembles the achievement's and memories a player looks back upon as a testament to their journey as a Test match cricketer. A few player's try to make sure that before they reach a Test century while batting, that they call for a player to bring out their Baggy Green and remove their helmet to add extra meaningfulness when scoring the run/s to reach the triple figure mark. Players such as Michael Slater and Michael Clarke are two player's who come to mind in doing this.

The first test cap recorded was in 1876/77 (first Australian captain was before our first Prime Minister), so there's a genuine pastime there within Australian culture, but the Baggy Green cap style as we know it only came about years after that early era.

Given the competitiveness to crack the Australian test side, and the beauty of history and tradition in Test cricket, a Baggy Green is seen as one of the highest levels of achievement - just receiving the Cap that is.

However, to earn a place in this rich history, continual hard work and practice backed both mentally and physically is needed to not only earn your Test debut but to stay a representative too and earn the nod from the Australian cricket community.

Look at a few players in more recent decades; Steve Waugh, Allan Border, Glen McGrath, Shane Warne, Matthew Hayden, Adam Gilchrist, and even more recent past players like Ricky Ponting, Michael Clarke, Mitchell Johnson and Michael Hussey.

Their stories are impressive, but they will all credit a big motivation to their successes has been the vision and then epic moment when they put that Baggy Green on.

Long may the tradition and pride of the Baggy Green continue!

Steve Waugh poses with his Baggy Green © Getty Images

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