Baggy green of popular Australian cricketer up for grabs in mixed auction

Author: Richard Brewster | Posted: 23rd February, 2023

One of Australia’s all-time favourite cricketers Doug Walters will come under the spotlight on Friday March 3 in Melbourne when his 1968 baggy green Test cap (lot 3537) is auctioned by Abacus Auctions at 29 Hardner Road, Mount Waverley.

The four-day auction of stamps, postal history, postcards, coins, banknotes, sporting memorabilia and collectables is the company’s first for 2023, beginning at 11am Tuesday February 28 and continuing at the same time each day.

The cap, carrying a $15,000 catalogue estimate, has been signed by the Australian batting great who played 75 Tests between 1965 and 1981.

In his first 11 Tests, Walters scored more than 1000 runs including centuries in his first two Tests against England in 1965-66.

When he retired, only three Australians – Greg Chappell, Don Bradman and Neil Harvey – had made more Test runs.

So popular was Walters with the Sydney Cricket Ground crowds in particular that he has been recognised with the naming of The Doug Walters Stand.

Another interesting piece of sporting memorabilia is the c1880 fan-shaped chromolithographed scene (lot 3558) on paper of a football match with red flags atop the goals but no behind posts.

With stamps and postal history on offer for the first three days of the auction, collectors will be particularly impressed at an extremely rare 1898-1908 Rhodesian Arms 100-pound cherry red example (lot 1607) with a catalogue estimate of $10,000.

Among the Australian offerings, a single watermark King George V 1d die bright red proof (lot 222) – of which there are only four recorded examples – stands out at an $8000 estimate.

A large part sheet of 41/2 d violet King George V stamps (lot 240) is another eye catcher at $4000, while lot 139 – comprising commercial covers with different solo frankings – is worth close examination.

Among the Australian coins and banknotes is a 1930 penny, graded aVF (average very fine), with a $15,000 catalogue estimate (lot 3058), while a 1922/1 overdated threepence (aVG) is listed at $2000 (lot 3066).

Mystery has always surrounded the origins of the 1930 penny for, with the onset of the Great Depression, they were never destined to be minted.

However, it is believed that, once the Melbourne Mint became a tourist destination, they were issued at the time as a souvenir for visitors.

A 1933 King George V head florin (two shillings) graded choice uncirculated (lot 3073) is very scarce and an undoubted boon for coin collectors.

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