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Vaas announces retirement plans for 2008

KANDY, Sri Lanka – Sri Lanka bowler Chaminda Vaas will retire in 2008.

Vaas, 33, has been recalled for the first test against England starting on Saturday after being dropped earlier this month in Australia. It will be his 100th test.

“I give myself one more year in test cricket and in that time I hope to take 350 wickets before I quit,” Vaas told reporters on Friday.

“I will not wait for people to start saying that I am too old to play and be left out of the side as I don’t want to become a laughing stock,” Vaas said.

“I am proud and honoured to have served my country for so long and I am eager to perform in my 100th Test. I want to make it a special one by bowling my country to victory,” he said.

Vaas has taken 320 wickets at 29.44 during a 13 year test career.

There has been speculation in Sri Lanka that Vaas has been told by the selectors that his place cannot be guaranteed after the first test against England.

The left-arm quick bowler has not taken a five-wicket haul in test cricket since July 2005.

Sri Lanka captain Mahela Jayawardene praised Vaas’s record.

“It’s a great achievement for a sub-continental fast bowler,” Jayawardene said. “He’s been a great fighter.”

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