Sydney:Michael Hussey leads the Australians joining the Indian Premier League (IPL) after Cricket Australia (CA) and the organisers resolved the sponsorship row that prevented star players from playing in the multimillion dollar Twenty20 extravaganza.
The 32-year-old middle-order batsman confirmed he has signed with the IPL but said playing for the country will remain a priority, alleviating CA's fears that players might take premature retirement to rake in the moolah in offer from the cash-rich IPL.
"I have signed a short-form contract indicating I am interested in playing in the IPL, if I am available," Hussey wrote in his column in The Daily Telegraph.
Hussey further pointed out that donning the national colours is an honour for any Australian sportsperson.
"It's one of the greatest honours for an Australian sportsman and I wouldn't retire any earlier just to play a few more IPL matches.
"My aim is to play as many Tests, one-day internationals (ODI) and Twenty20 matches as possible for Australia and anything else that comes along will be a bonus. No amount of money will cause me to think otherwise," he said.
Sensing a conflict of interest between its global sponsors and the league sponsors, CA did not allow its players to sign up with the IPL till the issue was resolved. IPL chairperson Lalit Modi declared Friday that the standoff has come to an end and Australian players have started penning the contract.
Hussey praised his national board and said the cricketers have no complaints against CA in terms of remuneration or benefits.
"I can't speak about other nations who may not be as well remunerated as Australian cricketers. Australian cricketers are very well looked after. We have nothing to complain about," said Hussey.
He also said he has signed a short-term contract and CA and the Australian Cricketers' Association (ACA) are working out the details of the long-term one.
"At the moment, the ACA and CA are working through the longer IPL contracts, which I am yet to sign."