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Sri Lanka Premier League set for August this year

Tariq Engineer

May 7, 2012

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Angelo Mathews and Mahela Jayawardene at a training session, Colombo, April 2, 2012
The Sri Lanka Premier League is set for later this year © AFP
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Sri Lanka Cricket has signed a new deal with Somerset Entertainment Ventures to hold the Sri Lanka Premier League (SLPL) in 2012, ESPNcricinfo has learned. The deal was signed on May 5 and the tournament has been tentatively scheduled to be held between August 10 and August 31, just ahead of the ICC World Twenty20 that will be held in Sri Lanka in September.

The SLPL was supposed to kick off last year, with SLC's then interim committee signing a five-year deal with Somerset Entertainment Ventures to organise the event. However, the Sri Lankan board was forced to postpone the tournament after the BCCI refused to allow its players to participate at the last minute, causing a delay in the naming of the final composition of the teams and affecting overall preparations for the event. In addition, the interim committee that signed the deal was subsequently replaced and there was criticism of some of the clauses in the contract by the parliamentary Committee on Public Enterprises (COPE).

A new set of administrators were elected in January and they have been negotiating with Somerset Entertainment Ventures to resolve their differences. The new deal has addressed the concerns raised by the COPE report and has been cleared by the office of the Sri Lankan attorney general, ESPNcricinfo understands.

The format of the tournament remains the same. SLPL will have seven teams that will play each other in a league format followed by semi-finals and finals. The games will most likely be played in Colombo and Kandy. Last year's event was scheduled to kick off on July 19, 2011, with the final to be played on August 6. The tournament hit its first hurdle when the BCCI decided to withhold its permission to allow Indian players to take part on the grounds that Somerset Entertainment Ventures, which owned the commercial rights, would be handling the contracts for international players and that it could lead to complications, should disputes arise over payments.

In order to assuage the Indian board, SLC was willing to back the Indian players' contracts so that their financial interests were protected, but that was not enough to satisfy the BCCI. There were also suggestions that former IPL chairman Lalit Modi had a hand in the event, but SLC and Somerset Entertainment Ventures repeatedly denied them, as did Modi.

Tariq Engineer is a senior sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

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Posted by   on (May 10, 2012, 10:36 GMT)

i hope play bangladeshi player shakib.tamim.nasir.asraful. masrafee bin mortoza.musfiq rahim.and abdur razzaq

Posted by stormy16 on (May 9, 2012, 19:35 GMT)

Wishing SLC best wishes - they need a break! Compairing its success to the IPL is nothing more than ignorent. This is a small country without the financial clout of the BCCI or the massive Indian cricket community. In reality this would amount to a regional T20 in ONE Indian state but the standard of cricket and stakes would be much higher. More than anything else is offers SL's an opportunity to showcase local talent and attract overseas contracts. Lets hope the outcomes are positive.

Posted by   on (May 9, 2012, 11:38 GMT)

sri lanka p league...........................................................

Posted by chapathishot on (May 9, 2012, 11:12 GMT)

Last time also it was cancelled in the 11th hour ,Lets hope it wont happen this time.They might have some confidence from the BPL but banglas are real cricket crazy

Posted by Bruisers on (May 9, 2012, 10:57 GMT)

IPL is successful worldwide because of the quality of the cricket.. We all saw how well South Africa hosted the 2nd edition of IPL and also the crowd turnout was fantastic. Sri Lanka does have some good players but the talent can't match the Indians. And the money they offer won't lure people like Gayle, Pollard, Warner etc. However we may see most of the Pakistanis participate (as usual), but this league won't be successful without Indian stars..

Posted by Kohli--The_Messi_of_Cricket on (May 9, 2012, 10:30 GMT)

@EPL - What do you mean by EPL? Barclays Premier League? If so, then what does that have to do with Sri Lankan cricket?

Posted by natmastak_so-called on (May 9, 2012, 9:21 GMT)

guys , can we please wait before commenting , for bcci to OFFICIALLY ban it's players from participating.to my knowledge, there's no official word about it for this edition.

Posted by   on (May 9, 2012, 7:58 GMT)

@ he's still against ipl,slpl ,slc, & BCCI

Posted by   on (May 9, 2012, 3:20 GMT)

ha ha... here we go again.

Posted by   on (May 8, 2012, 21:58 GMT)

How much do you think they will look to offer Gayle,Pollard and Bravo?

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