AUSTRALIAN cricket legend Shane Warne has raised over A$1 million for the bushfire appeal by auctioning off his famous baggy green cap.

The former spin bowler, 50, announced his generous auction during day four of the third Test between Australia and New Zealand.

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Shane Warne put his famous baggy green cap up for grabs in a tremendous gesture to help raise funds for Australian wildfire victims
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AFP or licensors

The bushfires have been blamed on widespread drought and record temperatures as New South Wales experienced 50C heat last week[/caption]

Warne said: “The bushfires have been absolutely horrific, they’ve touched all of us in a way.”

“To see the total devastation, lives have been lost, families have been lost, over 500 million wildlife has died. The stories are horrific.”

“We always wore this the first session of a bowling day every time and I’ve had that baggy green cap my whole career and I’ve decided to put it up for auction.”

Just moments after the baggy green was listed online, former England skipper Michael Vaughan put in his offer of A$25,000 for the cap.

But his sum was quickly passed in an incredible display of generosity.

The cap was bought by Commonwealth CEO Matt Comyn in Sydney who snapped it up with only a minute of the auction remaining.

The amount – A$1,007,500 (£691,437) – will go to the Australian Red Cross Disaster Relief and Recovery Fund.

The Commonwealth Bank revealed it will take the cap on a national tour to continue to raise money for communities affected by the bushfires, before it permanently resides in the Bradman Museum.

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Shane warn pictured holding his baggy green, an iconic symbol of Australian Test cricket
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Firefighters across Australia have been tackling widespread blazes during the country’s worst ever bushfire season[/caption]

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Adelaide wildlife rescuer Simon Adamczyk holds a koala he rescued at a burning forest
EPA

Warne said he was “blown away” by the huge amount raised for those affected by the wildfires.

He wrote: “Thankyou so much to everyone that placed a bid & a huge thankyou / congrats to the successful bidder – you have blown me away with your generosity and this was way beyond my expectations!”

“The money will go direct to the Red Cross bushfire appeal. Thankyou, Thankyou, Thankyou.”

The baggy green is an iconic symbol of Australian Test cricket, given to an Australia player when he makes his Test debut.

Players often wear the same cap for every Test they appear in.

The amount raised for the bushfire appeal is more than double the A$425,000 (about £290,000) amount paid for Sir Donald Bradman’s cap, widely considered the finest cricketer in history.

Shane Warne is the latest sporting star to raised money for the Australian bushfire victims.

Moments after Warne’s announcement, AFL star Dayne Beams put his 2010 premiership

medal up for grabs with the funds going towards the Bushfire Appeal.

Tennis star Nick Kyrgios kicked off the sporting initiative, promising to donate A$200 for every ace he managed this summer.

Teammates Alex de Minaur and Sam Stosur followed suit.

Australia’s fast bowling group have pledged A$1000 for every wicket taken during the Sydney Test.

Several Big Bash stars are donating A$250 for every six hit.

French Open champion Ash Barty announced she would donate her entire prize money from the Brisbane International to the Red Cross Fire Appeal.

Barty also contributed A$30,000 late last year to the RSPCA to help wildlife affected by the national disaster.

Australia is currently being ravaged by its worse ever bushfire season, which has so far claimed the lives of 26 people, over one billion animals, and destroyed 2,000 homes.

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The koala species has been declared “functionally extinct” as a result of the wildfires
EPA

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One firefighter in Darwin has been accused of deliberately igniting 17 wildfires – but lawyers argue he was actually fighting the blazes he was accused of starting[/caption]


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