Paul Sheldon, the Surrey chief executive, has confirmed for the first time that the club are interested in hosting Indian Premier League matches at The Oval.
"It is true we have spoken to certain IPL franchises about staging games here," Sheldon said. "If it was possible within the calendar and with the blessing of the ECB, we would certainly look at it." Earlier this year Keith Bradshaw, the MCC chief executive, visited the tournament's chairman, Lalit Modi, about the possibility of bringing IPL "exhibition" games to Lord's. At the time, Sheldon was rumoured to have also shown interest for The Oval, though he denied any talks had been made.
Now, however - thanks to the agent of Surrey's offspinner, Saqlain Mushtaq, who revealed Surrey's plans to PakPassion.net - Sheldon has confirmed that the IPL might one day be coming to England.
"Looking forward to 2009, the domestic and international calendar is very tight - so it will probably be difficult to find time for it," he said. "If it were possible we would be very keen to do it, but we would always work closely with the ECB."