Otago cricket chiefs say they'll consider an audacious US$250,000 ($404,000) bid from New South Wales to grab Brendon McCullum for the inaugural Champions League Twenty20 tournament in October.

Otago, the New Zealand Twenty20 champions, were yesterday celebrating their invitation to the tournament in India which was extended from eight to 12 teams and carries a first prize of US$3 million.

But that was tempered by NSW chief executive Dave Gilbert's confirmation they were prepared to spend up large to snare McCullum after losing their big-hitting batsman David Warner to the Delhi Daredevils.

The New Zealand wicketkeeper/batsman is eligible for NSW and his home Otago province, having played for the Sydneysiders in the Australian Twenty20 final.

Regulations state if a player is eligible for more than one Champions League team, their overseas side must pay their home side a US$250,000 transfer fee to secure their services.

McCullum previously indicated his allegiance lay with Otago, but the province's chief executive Ross Dykes said such a cash windfall was tempting.

"Given the fact he has played for (NSW) in the last 12 months, I think it could happen," Dykes told the Sydney Morning Herald.

"You can't ignore figures like that. But on the other hand, you have loyalty reasons for which you wouldn't want to do it. Brendon would have to be involved in these discussions."

McCullum has joined his New Zealand teammates in England to prepare for the Twenty20 World Cup, after his Kolkata Knight Riders finished last in the Indian Premier League in South Africa with just three wins from 14 matches.

The New Zealand vice-captain averaged 23.75 in a largely unhappy tournament, with 84 not out his highest score.

Gilbert said the transfer fee they received from Delhi for Warner would be used to try and entice McCullum.

"There is no doubt having Brendon McCullum in your team increases your chances of a win, that is an undeniable fact," Gilbert said.

"It's about ensuring we have got all the bases covered. It is certainly something we will consider. It is a cost-neutral exercise."

The Champions League will include the top-three IPL sides - Deccan Chargers, Bangalore Royal Challengers and Delhi - the top-two sides from Australia, England and S outh Africa, and the champions from New Zealand, Sri Lanka and West Indies.

There will be 23 matches in the tournament from October 8-23, and the teams will be divided into four groups of three, with the top two advancing to the second stage.

Even if a team loses every match they will collect the minimum participation fee of US$250,000.

- NZPA