Melbourne, Feb.21 : Australian captain Ricky Ponting has warned all-rounder Andrew Symonds that he would be in breach of his contract if he pulled out of a scheduled tour of Pakistan.
Ponting said if Cricket Australia's (CA) advice was that the players would be safe and the tour went ahead, they would be bound by their contracts to make themselves available.
"Whether it's unfair or not, we've all signed off on it. There will be lots of safety and security measures put in place and there will be all sorts of security checks done throughout Pakistan over the next few weeks to let us know as a player group whether it is actually safe to tour or not," Fox Sports quoted Ponting, as saying.
"If it is seen to be safe and you don't go, then I think that's where the breach of your contract would be," he added.
While appearing to have ruled himself out of the tour, Symonds back-pedaled slightly.
"The door's ajar, but you know where I stand on it," he said.
Symonds said if CA told him that he was required to tour, "at the time that happens I'll have to make a decision that I'll have to stand by".
"Safety is at a premium, that's all it is really. Make as big or little a deal out of it as you like, but to me that's the problem we're faced with, otherwise I'd be saying I'll go there and play cricket," he added.
Australian opener Matthew Hayden said other individuals, including himself, would also make up their own minds after taking on board advice from CA and security experts.
CA public affairs manager Peter Young said the players' contracts bound them to play whenever CA organised cricket.
The Pakistan tour overlaps the lucrative Indian Premier League, for which Symonds stands to reap huge rewards if he plays, after selling for the second-highest price tag (1.47 million dollars) in player auctions.
Young said if Symonds skipped the Pakistan tour, he would still need CA permission to play in the IPL, but it was "hypothetical" at this stage whether that would be granted.
"Our advice to everybody is let's stay calm while we move through the process," he said.