Australia's Test players are set to be allowed to play in the lucrative Indian Premier League before preparing at home for the May tour to the West Indies, the players' union said Thursday.
The Australian Cricketers Association said Cricket Australia has indicated there will be no objection to Test stars Ricky Ponting, Brett Lee, Andrew Symonds, Matthew Hayden and Michael Hussey playing in the first 14-16 days of the six-week IPL tournament, which starts on April 18.
They will then be required back home for a team camp before the touring party sets off for the West Indies in the second week of May.
"I don't think there will be a problem," said ACA chief executive Paul Marsh.
"Certainly based on our discussions with Cricket Australia to date I don't see any reason why they wouldn't be able to play in the IPL, assuming that there are no other commitments to Cricket Australia," he said.
CA spokesman Peter Young said the governing body was in the process of going through details and options, which include the possibility of practice matches before the West Indies tour.
"Our first priority is to ensure the team has appropriate preparation for the tour of the West Indies," he said.
Australia's opening tour match in the West Indies is scheduled to start on May 16 ahead of the opening Test in Kingston, Jamaica, on May 22.
This week's cancellation of the tour to Pakistan over security concerns opens a window in a crowded international schedule, allowing some Australian players to fulfill around one-third of their IPL contracts and collect pro rata payments.
Symonds is the highest paid Australian player, with a contract of 1.35 million US dollars for a full season. Lee is on 900,000 US dollars, Ponting 400,000 US dollars, Hayden 375,000 US dollars and Hussey 350,000 US dollars.