Hayden, Hussey put national pride ahead of T20 bucks

Published: Wednesday, June 25, 2008, 3:35 [IST]
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Sydney: Australian batters Matthew Hayden and Michael Hussey have both confirmed that Australia's tour match in India in early October will take precedence over their potential involvement in the T20 Champions League.

Contradicting the claim of I S Bindra, a member of the Indian Premier League (IPL) governing council, who said the pair would play for their IPL team, Chennai Super Kings, even though the Champions League clashes with Australia's tour of India, both said the one warm-up match scheduled to take place from Oct 2 to 5, before the first Test in Bangalore, which begins on Oct 9, would be given precedence.

Hayden said his IPL contract left no doubt that Australia's match would be his sole concern.

"The rule is simple on this one. If we are playing for Australia in any form, our decision will be to honour that commitment first. There are no grey areas here," Hayden told The Australian.

For Hussey, playing for Chennai Super Kings appears to be his third priority. He has already confirmed that he would prefer to represent his home state Western Australia, who have qualified for the Champions League as one of the two top Twenty20 teams in Australia's domestic tournament.

Although he would have reluctantly accepted that his contract gave Chennai precedence over Western Australia, the issue will probably be irrelevant in any case.

The Sydney Morning Herald has reported that Hussey told team officials on Sunday that he expected to be playing in the tour match and not in the Champions League.


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