Australia legend Shane Warne looks poised to announce he will retire from international cricket after the Ashes.
Test cricket's top wicket-taker will confirm his decision on Thursday, TV station Channel Nine said.
Warne is one wicket away from becoming the first bowler in Test history to claim 700 wickets, with the fourth Test starting on 26 December.
Hampshire are still confident the spinner will captain the county for the remaining two years of his contract. Watch Warne's wonder ball to Gatting
Warne first played for Hampshire in 2000 and has captained the side for two years.
"He is under contract for a further two years at Hampshire through to September 2008," said a Hampshire spokesman.
"At this time we anticipate his return to continue his career with us here at Hampshire."
Cricket Australia said it did yet not have plans for a Warne news conference.
Some reports also suggested fast bowler Glenn McGrath would follow Warne into retirement.
Cricket Australia spokesman Peter Young said: "There is nothing we can say. Those two players are the masters of their own destiny and the owners of their own futures and when they announce decisions on their futures is up to them."
Warne said in his column in Sydney's Daily Telegraph on Wednesday that he had no plans to quit.
But the Sydney Morning Herald claimed he was retiring and the Daily Telegraph subsequently carried the reports on its website.
Warne's Hampshire team-mate Shaun Udal said he had not heard from the Australian great but hoped the retirement would only be from the international game.
"If this is true, I would love to see him finish the next two or three years with Hampshire," said Udal.
"But I'm sure Warnie will go out in his own inimitable style."
The fourth Ashes Test takes place on Warne's home turf, the Melbourne Cricket Ground, and is expected to break the previous attendance records of 90,800 for a single day and 350,354 for the whole match.
Warne, who was named one of Wisden's five cricketers of the century in 2000, became the first ever bowler to reach 600 wickets during the 2005 Ashes series.
He has 25 more Test scalps than his nearest rival, Sri Lanka's Muttiah Muralitharan, although he has played 33 more games. McGrath is next in line with 555.
Warne has played 143 Tests since his debut against India in 1992.
It was not until 1993 that Warne was considered world class, when his first ball in an Ashes series bamboozled England's Mike Gatting at Old Trafford.
His best figures came against England in Brisbane in 1994, when he took 8-71 and he has 186 English wickets in 34 Ashes Tests, including 40 wickets in the 2005 series.