The McGrath Foundation, an Australia-based breast cancer support charity, has launched a campaign to raise Aus$1m (£568,000/€629,000/$772,000) by selling virtual tickets for the upcoming Test cricket match between Australia and India at the Sydney Cricket Ground.

The Virtual Pink Seats campaign has been launched in the build-up to the Vodafone Pink Test, which takes place at the SCG from January 7-11. The money raised will be used to support McGrath breast care nurses.

The campaign has been developed in response to the announcement that the SCG will operate at 25% capacity for the Test, in line with COVID-19 guidelines. The McGrath Foundation is encouraging people across Australia to purchase virtual pink seats for the match, with the money raised to be put towards the goal of funding seven breast care nurses.

Fans can purchase virtual pink seats for Aus$20 by visiting pinktest.com.au. Fans will then receive their virtual pink seat with their name on it, which can be shared on social media with the #pinktest hashtag.

The McGrath Foundation has worked with Cricket Australia and the SCG Trust to make the Pink Test one of the biggest charitable sporting events in the world over the last 13 years.

Glen McGrath, co-founder and president of the McGrath Foundation, said: “The Pink Test has become a national phenomenon and we always look forward to seeing people pinking up with our bandanas to help bathe the SCG in pink as a symbolic show of support for those experiencing breast cancer and raising much needed funds for the McGrath Foundation.

“But the reality is the Pink Test will look a little bit different this year. There will be less people in the crowd and sadly, we won’t have our much-loved volunteers on the ground collecting donations.

“We’re hoping people will buy their virtual Pink Seats to show their support because pink is more than just a colour – it’s the energy, the hope and the support that comes from going pink that makes a difference to people with breast cancer.

“By buying virtual Pink Seats, not only will you be helping to keep the ‘pink’ in the Pink Test, you’ll also be showing your support for those families experiencing breast cancer. It’s a simple, easy way everyone can get involved, whether they’re at the SCG or watching from home.”

Holly Masters, McGrath Foundation chief executive, added: “Many people don’t realise it costs us over Aus$14m per year to fund our network of 154 McGrath breast care nurses, so the money raised from the Pink Test is integral to help us keep providing support to those 55 Australians diagnosed with breast cancer every day.

“Our McGrath breast care nurses have continued to play a vital role in supporting families experiencing breast cancer in this last year, particularly as they help patients navigate the additional challenges of COVID-19.

“We are so grateful for the continued support of the cricket community, Cricket Australia and the SCG and we hope everyone will get involved and help keep the ‘pink’ in the Pink Test by buying their virtual Pink Seats from pinktest.com.au.”

Image: Simeon King/CC BY-SA 4.0/Edited for size