Athletes including some of the country’s best tennis players and cricketers have said they’ll donate money to support fire relief initiatives, pledging hundreds of dollars for every ace they serve or six they hit over their code’s summer seasons

The Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) tour begins next week with the ATP Cup in Brisbane, Sydney, and Perth, and Melbourne’s Ellen Perez kicked off what’s now being called ‘Serving Up Some Help’ among the country’s sports communities, by promising to donate money for every ace she hits over the summer season.

Nick Kyrgios jumped in and pledged yesterday that he’ll donate $200 for every ace he hits, too.

For what it’s worth, back at the Australian Open in 2018, Kyrgios hit 36 aces in a single match against Bulgarian Grigor Dimitriov, so if he’s going to be in that kind of form for the 2020 season, he’ll be looking at donating at least $7200 to bushfire relief efforts.

Other players have also taken Perez’s lead and are also promising to donate fire relief money for every ace they hit, with players of every level like Samantha Stosur, Alex De Minaur, Storm SandersJohn Millman and John Peers promising to donate money over the 2020 season, which kicks off next week.

The ATP itself has taken up the gauntlet laid down by Perez, and has pledged to donate $100 for every ace served across the entire ATP Cup this week, where over 1500 aces are expected to happen.

The Serving Up Some Help fire relief challenge has now also crossed sport codes, with Brisbane Heat batsman Chris Lynn pledging to donate $250 to the Red Cross Bushfire Appeal for every six he hits during the Big Bash League – which is renowned for its huge hits.

The Heat will be playing the Hobart Hurricanes tonight at Blundstone Arena in Tasmania tonight, and are locked in for at least another seven games before the playoffs at the end of the month.

Update: LaMelo Ball has announced he’ll be donating the equivalent of a month’s worth of his salary to fire relief efforts.

ESPN has reported that the young Illawarra Hawks player and potential No.1 NBA draft pick LaMelo Ball has pledged a month’s worth of his NBL salary to bushfire relief.

The 18-year-old is currently out after sustaining a foot injury in December, but considering the average NBL player is on about $100k a year, it’ll be a donation that’s deeply appreciated.

Image: Getty Images / Robert Cianflone / Chris Hyde / Darrian Traynor