Pakistan cricketers can return to the IPL from March 2010 if the PCB provides a no-objection certificate (NOC) and government clearance and also ensures that their visas are in order by November 20, three days before the player trading season for 2010 starts.

Eleven Pakistani players - including Shahid Afridi and Umar Gul, the stars of Pakistan's 2009 World Twenty20 campaign - were recruited by the Kolkata, Rajasthan, Delhi, Hyderabad and Bangalore franchises before the inaugural IPL.

However, the franchises opted to retain the contracts of only four of them - Akmal and Tanvir (Rajasthan), Misbah-ul-Haq (Bangalore) and Gul (Kolkata) - after it became clear they would not be able to play in the second season of the league following the Mumbai attacks. Most franchises were quick to seek the return of Pakistan players to the 2010 edition of the lucrative Twenty20 league after Pakistan won the ICC World Twenty20 in June.

According to an IPL release, the Twenty20 league will conduct its third auction on January 19 in Mumbai for which the eight franchises will be allowed to spend up to US$750,000. The league will also use pink balls, in partnership with the MCC, for practice matches ahead of the 2010 season and will allow four fielding substitutes for each team instead of the 12th man.

Besides, in order to simplify the no-ball rule, the league has decided that any ball bowled above waist height regardless of the speed will be illegal. These decisions were taken at an IPL workshop in Bangkok last week.

It added that the IPL would be played from 2010 with the ICC's Anti Corruption and Security Unit cover in place and also the BCCI anti-doping policy.