School teacher Ian Moran is taking leave without pay to play in the upcoming Champions League Twenty20, but his sacrifice could be rewarded with a slice of the $US2.5 million pie should Sydney Sixers emerge triumphant from the lucrative event.
Unlike the rest of the Sixers' touring party, which arrived in Johannesburg on Tuesday evening, Moran is not a full-time cricketer.
In order to take part in the tournament, he has had to forego three weeks of wages from his day job at Sydney's prestigious Trinity Grammar School, where he is a PE teacher and director of the school's cricket program.
But Moran will be handsomely rewarded if the Sixers go all the way in South Africa. With players entitled to half of the $A2.45 million purse for first prize, Moran, as one of 15 in the squad, could take home about $A80,000 for his troubles.
"That would cover the mortgage while I'm away," Moran joked. "Hopefully we get paid enough on the trip to make up for that [the lost wages]."
It's not the first time Moran's cricket has impacted on his day job.
The 33-year-old had to juggle his teaching duties with his cricket late last year after he was signed by Sixers boss Stuart Clark to play in the new-look Big Bash League.
Back then, however, he did not have to take time off from the classroom, although he conceded it was tough at times to make both professions work for him.
"There's a lot of juggling the timetable to get there," Moran said.
"I missed a couple of sessions with the Sixers because I couldn't get away from work. Then other times I've been able to get covered when there hasn't been as much on."
During his busiest periods, he would often burn the candle at both ends. He'd start work early, work a few hours then make the commute from Summer Hill to the SCG, before returning to school to "tie up some loose ends".
"If both parties are willing to be a little flexible with training times and work time then it can be done," said Moran, who plays for Sydney University at grade level.
"If I have to miss a class or two here and there in order to come to training, the school's pretty happy for me to do that — they've been very understanding."
Moran's balancing act will continue this summer as the Sixers have kept him on their roster for the Big Bash.
Moran, however, has even loftier ambitions than wearing the Sixers' magenta and still harbours hope of making a belated Shield debut for NSW.
He believes the experience he gains from training regularly with international stars such as Shane Watson, Brad Haddin, Mitchell Starc and Pat Cummins will be beneficial for his game — even if he watches the entire tournament from the dug-out.
Moran was a full-time pro in 2006-07 when he played for Scotland in England's limited-overs county competition but he has not had the same luxury in Australia "because you have to pay the bills, don't you?"
"Last year with the eight weeks during the Big Bash — training every day, getting the physio treatment and the massages and the conditioning work because you have the time to do it, it obviously improves your cricket," Moran said.
"I think my own game got a lot better towards the back end of the Big Bash season as I was training every day and my body felt a lot stronger and injury-free for having those perks that you get as a full-time cricketer.
"Hopefully I can use the three weeks coming up now for the same benefit, regardless of how much game time I get. I'll hopefully be ready for an opportunity if it arises."