Knight Riders host Daredevils in IPL 2013 opener

Knight Riders parade the IPL trophy around Eden Gardens Associated Press

Defending champions Kolkata Knight Riders will kick off IPL 2013 by hosting Delhi Daredevils at Eden Gardens on April 3. The 76-game league will have the same format as it did in the 2012 season, with each of the nine teams playing the others home and away, before the playoffs.

The top four teams at the end of the round-robin stage on May 19 will qualify for the playoffs. The Qualifier 1 will be played in Chennai between the top two teams in the league and the winner of that match will secure a place in the final, in Kolkata on May 26. The loser of the Qualifier 1 will play the winner of the Eliminator, contested between the third and fourth teams in Chennai, in Qualifier 2, and the winner of that match in Kolkata will make the final.

Hyderabad Sunrisers, the new IPL franchise owned by Sun TV network, will play their first game on April 5, at home against Pune Warriors.

IPL 2013 will be played at 11 venues - the nine home venues plus Dharamsala and Ranchi. Kings XI Punjab will play their last two home games in Dharamsala, while Knight Riders will travel to Ranchi for their last two home games.