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699 wickets and one more to go

Warne will get the chance to become the first bowler in the history of Test cricket to take 700 wickets, in the Boxing Day Test against England.

india Updated: Dec 20, 2006 12:33 IST

Cricket-Warne eyes Ashes whitewash and emotional 700th wicket

Australia leg-spinner Shane Warne has set sights on an Ashes whitewash and a 700th test wicket in front of his home crowd at the Melbourne Cricket Ground.

Test cricket's leading wicket-taker bowled Monty Panesar to seal the series-clinching victory in the third test on Monday and he is already looking forward to the fourth match starting on December 26.

"Our execution has been fantastic so far, and we want to keep that going and win the series 5-0," Warne said in his column in the Sydney Telegraph.

"England have played pretty well but we just haven't allowed them into the game. When the knockout blow needed to be done, we delivered."

Warne said the victory was particularly satisfying following the disappointment of losing the Ashes in England last year.

"This has been one of the sweetest victories of my career and the script couldn't have worked out any better," he said.

"We have got the Ashes urn back and now I have the chance to take my 700th wicket in front of my home crowd at the MCG on Boxing Day.

"It's amazing how my career has unfolded. Things just have a funny way of working out."

Warne is expecting England to battle hard to win at least one of the last two tests led by their captain Andrew Flintoff.

"Flintoff says they have pride to play for, so do we," he said. "That's why we don't want to lose a test.

"They will bounce back and we expect them to fight."

The 37-year-old Warne said he did not know if this would be his final Ashes series.

"I am not thinking about that at the moment," he said. "I am enjoying my cricket and bowling well enough and we'll see how it pans out."

First Published: Dec 19, 2006 19:00 IST