West Indies domestic news October 24, 2012

Caribbean T20 undergoes format change

ESPNcricinfo staff

The format of the Caribbean T20 has been altered to increase the number of preliminary matches each team plays from four to six. As per the new format, the seven regional teams will play each other once and the team with most points at the end of the league stage will automatically qualify for the final. The other finalist will be decided after a playoff between the second and the third-placed teams. The winner of the tournament will also qualify for next year's Champions League T20. The tournament will kick off on January 6 with a match between Trinidad & Tobago, the current champions, and Jamaica at the Queen's Park Oval, Port of Spain and the final will be played on January 20 in St. Lucia.

"This format will allow the regional teams to increase the number of matches in a form of the game that has become very popular around the world, and of which we are now world champions," Roland Holder, the WICB cricket operations manager, said.

Previously, the seven regional sides used to compete with three international teams in a ten-team tournament. The teams were divided into two groups, with each team playing four games before the knockouts.

The schedule of the one-day regional tournament was also changed. The one-day matches will be spread throughout the season to reduce the possibility of the tournament getting affected by the hurricane season and will be played alongside the first-class matches.

Next year's Regional Super50 is set to begin on February 7 with the Regional 4-Day competition set to follow a couple of days later. Last season's 50-over competition was held between October 19 and 29, but had three matches washed out and three others with overs reduced. The first-class competition ran from February to April without too much trouble from the weather.

"In the last two or three seasons, by virtue of us playing the Regional Super50 in October/November, we have had several matches rained out," Holder said. "We were in an unwelcome situation where a team made it into the semi-finals having played one match, which severely affected the competitiveness of the tournament."

Provisions have also been made to allow teams to change their squads between the four-day and 50-over competitions.

12:30pm, October 25: This story has been updated.