$4 million prize money for Champions Trophy
The prize money for the Champions Trophy has increased nearly four times, with US$4 million on offer for the tournament to be played from September 22 to October 5 in South Africa.
The format has also been revamped, with only eight instead of ten teams participating. Unlike in 2006, when the tournament lasted nearly a month, there will be no qualifying round this time. Centurion and Wanderers will host all 15 games between them.
The teams have been divided into two groups of four each and the top two from each will qualify for the semi-finals. India and Pakistan find themselves in the same group, along with Australia and West Indies, and the two rivals will meet on the fifth day of the tournament in a day-night game at Centurion. Group B includes South Africa, England, Sri Lanka and New Zealand. The hosts will play Sri Lanka in the opening game in Centurion.
Haroon Lorgat, the chief executive of the ICC, said the significant increase in prize money was just the first in a series of innovations that the ICC would announce in the run-up to the Champions Trophy. "This short, sharp event, with its new format involving only the top eight sides in the world in nation-versus-nation action, should be a fantastic spectacle to follow on from the others that have already taken place in the ICC's centenary year," Lorgat said.
"We are extremely grateful to South Africa for stepping in to host the event after it was postponed last year because of security concerns in the original host country, Pakistan, and we are also grateful to our members for finding a slot for it in what is a busy year for the global game."