Australian cricket great Shane Warne is set to raise more than 300,000 Australian dollars (£160,000) for the bushfire appeal by auctioning off his prized ‘baggy green’ Test cap.

The 50-year-old wore the cap throughout his 145-Test career, in which he took an Australian record 708 wickets.

At least 24 people have died since the fires began in September.

“Everyone is in this together and we continue to find ways to contribute and help on a daily basis,” said Warne.

“This has led me to auction off my beloved baggy green cap that I wore throughout my Test career.

“I hope my baggy green can raise some significant funds to help all those people that are in desperate need.”

All money raised will go to the Australian Red Cross Disaster Relief and Recovery Fund, with the highest bid at 07:00 GMT on Monday standing at A$301,500. The auction is open until Friday.

The fires are a natural part of the Australian weather cycle, but have been worsened this year by hotter-than-average temperatures and a persistent drought in many areas.

Warne is Test cricket’s second-most successful bowler, with only Sri Lanka’s Muttiah Muralitharan (800) taking more wickets.

The ‘baggy green’ is given to an Australian Test player when he makes his international debut and cricketers usually wear the same cap throughout their career.

Legendary batsman Don Bradman’s baggy green fetched A$425,000 (£225,000) in 2003 – the Australian, who died in 2001, has the highest Test average of 99.94 runs.

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