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October 4, 2009
Brett Lee has set his sights on regaining his Test spot and becoming the first Australian bowler to take 400 wickets in both major forms of the game. In his last ten ODIs, Lee has taken 16 wickets to move to 321 overall and he felt the form was good enough to merit a recall to the Test side.
Lee was forced to sit out all five Ashes Tests with a side strain but made a comeback on the one-day leg of the England tour, saving his best performance of 5 for 49 in the series-winning match. When Lee takes the field on Monday for the ICC Champions Trophy final it will be his 11th ODI in a month and he felt it was the way forward in accomplishing his goals.
"I'd like to be the first Australian ever to take 400 one-day and 400 Test wickets, that to me is a milestone that 10 or 12 years ago I would never even have dreamed about," he told AAP. "To think that one day you might be a chance - might, I say - because it's going to take a lot more hard work ... it is certainly not off the limits if I play a couple of years of good cricket."
After the performances of Peter Siddle and Ben Hilfenhaus during the Ashes, along with the presence of Mitchell Johnson, Lee is facing a challenge to resume his Test career but it is one he relishes. Stuck on 310 Test wickets having missed Australia's last nine games, Lee said he wanted the ball back. "I see this next little time frame playing as much as I can in order to build up myself and get ready for that first Test," he said. "I certainly don't think the door [on a Test recall] is shut.
"I think I have got a lot to offer Australian cricket as far as Test bowling goes. I will be definitely be putting both feet forward for that first Test in Brisbane. The passion is still there."
Lee missed the 2007 World Cup through injury, and the next edition is in less than two years. He was firm about not setting a retirement date. "The way I'm feeling now, I'm only 32 years of age and I don't feel like I'm wearing down. I'm hoping my pace will speak for itself. I train hard, I'm doing everything I can. It might all end tomorrow but I still want to play for a few years yet."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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