The Good Stuff: Pro Athletes Raise Funds To Fight Australian Bushfires
Tennis Australia CEO and Australian Open Tournament Dir CRAIG TILEY confirmed that ROGER FEDERER, SERENA WILLIAMS, RAFAEL NADAL, CAROLINE WOZNIACKI and NAOMI OSAKA "will all participate" in the Rally for Relief fundraising event for bushfire charities in Melbourne next Wednesday. Australia native NICK KYRGIOS will "add local flavour to the event, with tickets now on sale." Former NBAer DIRK NOWITZKI "spotted the promise" from Kyrgios to donate $200 for every ace he hits this summer and has "vowed to match the pledge" (THE AUSTRALIAN, 1/8). The NBA, NBPA and nine Australian born NBAers yesterday announced a "combined $750,000 contribution toward relief and recovery efforts" for the bushfires. Mavericks F RYAN BROEKHOFF on Monday said he "hoped to organize a joint show of support for Australia" on Saturday when they play the 76ers, who have two Australian players: G BEN SIMMONS and F JONAH BOLDEN (DALLAS MORNING NEWS, 1/8).
CALIFORNIA STRONG: Brewers LF RYAN BRAUN and RF CHRISTIAN YELICH on Sunday will be at the California Strong charity softball game at Pepperdine Univ. They are "two of the original founders" of California Strong, which already has raised $2.3M to "individuals affected by California disasters and tragic events, beginning with last year's Woolsey and Camp Fires and Thousand Oaks shooting." Meanwhile, in two weeks, Braun and Yelich will attend the Brewers On Deck Fan Fest in Milwaukee, where they will "stop by The Avenue project on the west side of downtown." That is where they "invested money, time, and their hearts into helping renovate and develop a desolated three-block urban mall into offices, apartments" and a 40,000-square foot "food hall with 24 vendors" (USA TODAY, 1/7).
THINK PINK: Golfer MORGAN PRESSEL's charity event "produced a seven-figure check for the fifth consecutive year." The fundraiser's "total tally toward the fight against breast cancer these past 13 years" has been $9.5M. This year's Morgan & Friends event "raised $1,000,622." The event included golfers such as LEXI THOMPSON, PAULA CREAMER, BROOKE HENDERSON and HOFer JULI INKSTER. Golfer BILLY HORSCHEL also "lent his support" along with instructor MARTIN HALL (GOLFWEEK.com, 1/7).