No sponsor to share Michael Clarke`s triple ton glory at SCG
Sydney: Australian skipper Michael Clarke rewrote the record books at the Sydney Cricket Ground with his unbeaten triple hundred against India but his bat went without any sponsor`s logo for the first time.
The skipper en route to his maiden triple ton surpassed British Reginald Erskine Foster`s century old 287 to register the highest score at the venue.
His astonishing knock came four days after Dunlop Slazenger pulled out of its long-term sponsorship deal with batsman.
The only visible markings featured promotional stickers for McGrath Foundation Day at the SCG in aid of breast cancer research.
Clarke`s new manager James Erskine revealed that the sponsors had declined to renew the contract when it expired on December 31.
"I understand that Dunlop Slazenger are finding conditions tough in the current retail environment," Erskine told the `Australian`.
"They`ve had to make sacrifices and unfortunately Michael`s contract with the company was one of those. I`m currently in talks with several bat manufacturers and I expect to strike a new bat deal for Michael in the next three weeks," he added.
The batsman, however, is reportedly in talks with a lesser known sports goods company -- Spartan Sports -- for a new bat sponsorship deal, worth in the "high six-figures".
The Wollongong-based company confirmed it was in talks with Clarke`s management but pointed that the batsman`s asking price would have only "gone through the roof" after his knock today.
Clarke plundered Indian bowlers to all corners of the park to raise an unbeaten 329 before declaring the Australian innings at 659 for four, leaving the visitors with a mountain of runs to climb in order to save the Test.