Bangladesh Premier League 2012-13 December 22, 2012

Five BPL franchises sign contracts with BCB

Eleven months after they had acquired Bangladesh Premier League teams, five franchises out of seven have signed agreements with the Bangladesh Cricket Board. Sylhet Royals and Barisal Burners were the two teams that were not present in the ceremony held in Mirpur on Saturday, which took place after a long meeting between the franchises and the BPL governing council.

"The agreement was signed in a very cordial atmosphere," Ismail Haider Mallick, the BPL secretary, said. "It also ensures a successful journey of the BPL along with these franchises in future.

"Barisal Burners could not complete the formality as their owners left the country earlier this morning, while the signing with Sylhet Royals will be completed within a few days."

The signing of the agreement by five of the seven teams, signals a possible end to the BPL's biggest scourge. Ever since the first franchisee auction in January this year, the lack of a proper contract between the two most important parties was always pointed out as the root cause of all trouble, including the player payment issues.

It was understood throughout the year that because the BPL governing council didn't have a proper contract they weren't in a legal position to put pressure on the franchises that were not paying the players on time.

The franchises were reluctant to become a partner of Game On Sports, the tournament's event management firm, and the BPL governing council. Their demand of signing a contract only with the BCB was agreed upon.

Six divisions were won by six corporate houses in the franchise auction for the BPL before the inaugural edition. SQ Sports quoted Chittagong for $1.2 million, Orion Group got Khulna for $1.1 million, Digital Auto Care got Rajshahi for $1.07 million and a conglomerate led by Walton got Sylhet for $1.06 million. Dhaka was picked by Europa Group for $1.05 million and Barisal went to Alif Group for $1.01 million. Earlier this month, Flora Telecom brought Rangpur for $1.01 million to be the seventh franchise in the competition.

Mohammad Isam is ESPNcricinfo's Bangladesh correspondent

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