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Thursday, July 17, 2008

Cricket Premier League in 2010

A new English Premier League (EPL) cricket competition involving all 18 counties, two overseas teams and international players will start in 2010, the and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) announced on Wednesday.

The proposed EPL, which will be staged in June, follows the multi-million dollar launch of the Indian Premier League which started in April.

There will also be a new Twenty20 League played on Friday and Saturday nights in July and August to replace the current Pro40 competition played on a Sunday.
The new domestic Twenty20 competition will only comprise the 18 counties and not feature any additional overseas players but will serve as the qualifying competition for cricket's Champions League involving top teams from around the world.

Board chairman Giles Clarke told Sky Sports News that it had not yet been decided which overseas teams would be involved, but that it was unlikely they would be either Indian or Pakistani teams as they compete in the Indian Premier League.
"We do not expect the other teams to be Indian or Pakistani. They could be Australia, New Zealand , Sri Lanka , West Indies , who knows?

"The important thing is, it's going to be a very high standard competition, a very exciting competition.
"There is no doubt from all the detailed, exhaustive research we have done, we will provide what the spectators want, when they want it.
"We have sat down with broadcasters around the world to see what they would pay the most money for. We have looked at the right thing for our game in this country and we move forward on that basis."

In a statement, the ECB said the timetable and the format of the competition had been agreed by the board after detailed market research which clearly "demonstrated a spectator desire to watch more Twenty20 cricket in July and August.
"The EPL will be staged in June with the Twenty20 League being played in July, August and September and involving five home matches for each team."

Although the ECB rejected a controversial plan by Surrey county chairman David Stewart and Marylebone Cricket Club chairman Keith Bradshaw to have a competition which did not include all the counties, it did incorporate some of their funding proposals.
Stewart said in the ECB statement: "These are extremely exciting and satisfying proposals for the future of domestic cricket in England and Wales. I am delighted to support them.
The board also agreed the 2010 season would include a 50-over competition and 16 County Championship matches in a two-division structure

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