Domestic committee outlines English Premier League March 29, 2008

Lord's and The Oval may host IPL exhibition games

Cricinfo staff

Could the IPL be coming to London? © Getty Images

Two of England's leading international grounds, Lord's and The Oval, are considering offers to stage exhibition games involving teams from the Indian Premier League, according to a report in The Birmingham Post.

Although the venues for the initial games have already been allocated in India, there seems an increasing likelihood that other international venues will be also be used, as a way to promote the tournament around the world as much as provide world-class facilities. As it stands, however, the London venues will only host exhibition matches.

Paul Sheldon, the Surrey chief executive, declined to comment to The Times, while a spokesman for the MCC also refused to make a statement.

Meanwhile, the Domestic Structure Review Group, chaired by Glamorgan chairman Paul Russell, will go before the ECB on April 9 and is due to suggest a radical response to the IPL. The committee proposes two new Twenty20 competitions, the first of which will run in early summer along similar lines to the old Benson & Hedges Cup which ran for 30 years from 1972. It will feature Minor Counties, the universities and Ireland and Scotland.

The second tournament, according to today's Daily Telegraph, will be called the English Premier League, taking place at the height of summer and consisting of 21 teams in three groups of seven - with county sides supplemented by international players from India, Australia and South Africa. The idea falls in line with the suggestions made by ECB's chairman, Giles Clarke, that England should mirror some of the IPL's makeup: namely, that Twenty20 sides field three overseas players and four players under the age of 23.

"We wanted to see something radical come out of this committee," an insider told the Daily Telegraph, "but instead it is as if they have put all the same balls into the hat, shaken them around a bit and taken them out again.

"The idea of restoring the old Benson & Hedges Cup under a different name is just crazy. What this needed is some vision, a different pair of eyes. The DSRG should have gone out and sought the input of the players, the press, television. What about city teams, for instance, rather than counties? If we don't take this thing by the scruff of the neck, we will find that the game has been pinched off us by other operators."

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Andrew on March 31, 2008, 8:53 GMT

    It will be great to see the IPL matches live in UK. ECB can not match upto the IPL. The only EPL we will ever come across will be the football variety. So lets enjoy the IPL matches.

  • hayden on March 31, 2008, 1:29 GMT

    Please stop with this domestic Twenty20 madness! All it is doing is destroying teams like West Indies, Pakistan and New Zealand. International cricket whether it be Test or ODIs, is the pinnacle of the sport. This must never be forgotten.

  • Rajesh on March 30, 2008, 17:27 GMT

    For the IPL, the main issues would be the players. With the busy international schedule, we will have to see on how many international cricketers will actually play on a regular basis in the IPL. If the players choose IPL over their international assignments, then the local boards will not be happy. BCCI could end up in a difficult situation here.

    This is not the case with ICL. Their players have already been thrown out by the different cricket boards and they only have to concentrate on the ICL. Hence, the ICL games have the regular set of players. Also, the ICL games have improved and have been of a good standard in the current session.

    Since the ICL is termed "rebel" it can always come up with its own rules and innovative ideas to make the game more exciting as it does not have to follow the ICC rules.

  • RJ on March 30, 2008, 15:38 GMT

    I find it hilarious that fans of English football and English rugby find no problem in the fact they have the most money in the game and use it to leech players from other countries that have better football players and rugby players to make their own domestic league important.

    "But we have the most money. That's how the market works," they say.

    Now, one of the colonies has more money and far more people there that care about cricket than in England, and suddenly the prospect of English professional players plying their trade in another country is a bad thing.

    The County Championship needs to be preserved? For what, the 34 people in attendance? Can we just all accept the fact that very few people in England actually like cricket outside of the Ashes? We're all adults here, surely we can all realize that.

  • Ashwin on March 30, 2008, 15:28 GMT

    England and Wales should have their own 2020 Tournament of this scale and it should feature the Welsh, Irish, Scottish, Dutch and maybe Danish national sides, and City Teams instead of county teams to fill that gap when football isn't around, this way we can ensure that Cricket stays around, because during the Winter Rugby and football are the stuff, and Cricket should have an other major tournament during that small empty gap in the English Sporting calendar, that way cricket can control the summer.

  • Arsalan on March 30, 2008, 13:46 GMT

    i think its a good idea...will promote T20 cricket even more then it was earlier expected...but i think only exibition matches should be staged there...

  • siva on March 30, 2008, 12:46 GMT

    These not radical. Englans are in past gloryy and still want to hold some power by staging these matches. England is toothless after losing the monopoly, lost the veto poert etc. I warn BCCI NOT to fall in the trap of staging an IPL match and sharing the revenues. This is idea is typical English the way East India company and to India and beacake Union Jack. BCCI watch out.

  • Immi on March 30, 2008, 10:47 GMT

    Well, I think it is great if the IPL matches are going to be played in other int. venues. I'm sure that there are a lot of people who can't wait for the IPL to start, at least i'm really looking forward to it. I mean who would not want to see the great players play in one team. It is something new and great entertainment for the cricket lovers. It will be fun and it could be beneficial for the cricket players there self.

  • Muqit on March 30, 2008, 7:29 GMT

    wow I was just thinking about ENglish premier league cricket, and now ECB is ready to launch their version as well. It will be realy great to see competition between IPL and EPL T20. In footbal EPL, spanish la liga, Italian serie a compete with each ohter, its going to be great for cricket. This is the transition or revelutionary period, cricket is changing once and for all. Now I think the time has come when ICC need to re-schedule Future tour program, 7 month for international cricket, 4 month for lucrative leagues, one month of complete break. Wow ECB u r realy becoming cool, so far u guess(ECB) acted like nerd but ur realy funky.Now its time for ICC to become international coolest cricket council by supporting cool leagues. "COOL is cricket, cricket is cool" this is what should be the punchline ICC can use to globalize cricket allover the world. THREE cheers ot ECB n BCCI for launching premier leagues.

  • Ashwin on March 30, 2008, 2:27 GMT

    I dont really see how different this is from the EPL where players from pretty much all over the world come to play for English clubs , the BCCI is not saying you play here and not represent your country - players from brazil dont represent their local clubs to get into the national team . Obviously there are different leauges in different countries but this basically is like a local Indian leauge for T20 , just like the Ranji Trophy or Deodhar trophy for 4 day and Limited overs cricket. Thing is though i dont hear the BCCI not saying the ECB shouldnt set up their own leauge - as a player you would obviously prefer the money for your body can only perform so long , its quite natural they sign up , some of the BCCI's methods and its treatment of the ICL players are obviously not great but this helps players as much as it helps the BCCI , as for the BCCI putting it back in the game - now thats a different story - we can only hope.

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