Caribbean Premier League news February 13, 2013

Caribbean Premier League to contract 90 players

ESPNcricinfo staff

The Caribbean Premier League (CPL), the inaugural edition of which is set to begin on July 29, will include six franchises with 90 contracted players in all. Chris Gayle, Marlon Samuels, Sunil Narine, Dwayne Bravo, Darren Sammy and Kieron Pollard have been named 'franchise players'. Each of these icon players will turn out for one of the six teams, which are likely to be from Antigua, Barbados, Guyana, Jamaica, St Lucia, and Trinidad and Tobago.

This was announced by the WICB, alongside Verus International - the Barbados and USA-based company that is funding the Twenty20 league - during a press conference in St James on Tuesday. The CPL agreement between Verus International and the West Indies board stands for a minimum of 20 years. This tournament, the WICB reaffirmed, will replace the existing Caribbean T20 as region's domestic Twenty20 competition.

The financial benefits that the league will offer the players are a big positive, WICB president Julian Hunte said: "The WICB is elated with the agreement, which will allow for regional retainer contracts for a broad pool of players. These contracts will be funded by the CPL to the tune of US$360,000 annually. This significant investment will truly allow for cricketers in the Caribbean to pursue their profession as professionals."

The icon players will not necessarily represent their country in the league. Dirk Hall, managing director of Verus International, said this was to ensure better balance: "The CPL has chosen the top six T20 players in the region based on their stats and performances in this format of the game. Doing it this way ensures that each team is bolstered by a talented, top West Indian player, and that there is balance and fairness across the board on all six teams."

The CPL is also looking to rope in six international 'franchise players', one for each franchise. Every franchise will contract 15 players in all, with a maximum of four overseas signings. Of the regional players, at least six must be from the franchise country (in the case of St Lucia, locals will include players from the Windwards Islands and the in case of Antigua, players from the Leeward Islands) and four must be under-23 players. Apart from the appointed icon players, the rest of the squads will be assembled via a draft system, the working details of which are as yet unknown.

The WICB confirmed that the tournament's schedule has been drawn up so that the dates do not clash with any other West Indies international or domestic tournaments, or the IPL. All contracted players will be under an obligation to turn out for their franchises in the tournament.

The inaugural edition will include 30 group matches, followed by an eliminator and a final. Each of the franchises will play the other five on a home and away basis during the group stage.

The 2014 edition of the CPL is scheduled to be played between July 5 and August 10, while the 2015 tournament will run from June 21 to July 26.

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  • Mil on February 16, 2013, 16:50 GMT

    Explain balance when one team gets Gayle, Pollard etc and another gets Sammy. Can a team, say Trinidad, refuse him if they can get someone like Warner or Peterson? I hope so!

  • Dummy4 on February 16, 2013, 13:07 GMT

    It would be better if the name of the team was the city and not the country... playing for the country when you are not from the does not have a patriotic ring to it and makes no sense. This should definitely be reconsidered. How does this sound: The Georgetown Golden Boys, the Kingston Kingpins, Bridgetown Bulldozers, T&T Tacticians, Castries Wildcats and the St Johns Jaspers.

  • Matthew on February 16, 2013, 1:40 GMT

    Specialist bowlers for Trinidad franchise: Saeed Ajmal (PAK), Sunil Narine, Rampaul.

    Narine on one end and Ajmal on the other would spell trouble for any opposing team, especially since in recent years pitches in the Caribbean approach more subcontinental-type conditions.

  • Dummy4 on February 15, 2013, 22:56 GMT

    Rising_edge1234 do you that Sammy is the #8 all rounder in test in the World & #9 in ODI in the World.

  • Dummy4 on February 15, 2013, 3:38 GMT

    We are moving from CT20 to CPL, Overall it is a positive, like the states and counties the geographic territories will now become franchise Sam start well with naming of the franchises, but I dont think the Country names will be mentioned. Its Club cricket, Port Of Spain will have Pollard, ramdin, simmons, Holder, and Corbin and so on. The most beneficial aspect is that the regional players will be full fledged pros. and thats especially good for the 19-23 yrs olds there can have a focus on hone their overall game and not worry about income. Then we can allocate programs geared to address the 4 day game, follow vellocricket online

  • Brian on February 14, 2013, 22:45 GMT

    Sammy is an icon player? More like a con player to me. and did you see the logo? What a horrible choice.

  • Ahmad on February 14, 2013, 21:37 GMT

    @ Guyvillageman T20 isnt proper Cricket, so really does matter,

  • Dummy4 on February 14, 2013, 19:33 GMT

    GUYVILLAGEMAN it is no longer your country, it is a club based in your country. The people on the New York Yankees come from all parts of the US, Mexico, Dominican Republic, Panama and Puerto Rico and perhaps a few from Guam, but NY support them. What makes a Guyanese less intelligent than a New Yorker. In T&T and Guyana, when the Indian cricket team play there, lots of Trinis and Guyanese support them over the WI team.

  • Dummy4 on February 14, 2013, 19:21 GMT

    @ SAM SOOPERSAUD - Mumbai have a few players who are not from Mumbai and the residents support the team with the same alacrity as if they were all Mumbaians. Why do you feel that W. Indians would not have the same attitude towarts teams of similarly composed? All islands support the WI team, even islands that don't have representatives on it, so it would not be a psychological stretch at all. Remember also that at least 6 players on each team must be from the franchise country. The Windward Islands team consists of players from 4 different islands and the ream is embraced in Grenada as well as it is embraced in St Vincent, St Lucia and Dominica.

  • Devon on February 14, 2013, 12:35 GMT

    hopefully the Guyana franchise doesn't get Sammy.....he's a good player but compared to the other 5 stars he's a strong #6 choice....Samuels maybe??...tht wud be gr8

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