Afridi, Gayle among star-studded icons for Sri Lanka Cricket premier league

Sri Dharanee Performance Arts Theatre

July 03, 2012 (LBO) – Pakistani allrounder Shahid Afridi and West Indies opener Chris Gayle have been named the two international iconic players for the inaugural Sri Lanka Twenty20 premier league, Sri Lanka Cricket said. The August 10-31 tournament will also feature Sri Lankan skipper Mahela Jayawardene and former skippers Kumar Sangakkara and Tilakaratne Dilshan among the star-studded line-up, the governing body said in a statement on Tuesday.

Hard-hitting Gayle, will represent the Uva Province, while Afridi will play for Nagenahira, SLC said.

Sri Lanka Cricket has secured bids in excess of 30 million dollars from Indian companies to host its maiden T20. Each team can have six foreign players in their squad but with a provision that only four can be fielded in a playing XI.

A player draft will be conducted on July 5 and 6, with a lottery held to determine the order in which players are picked, ESPN Cricinfo reported.

SLC will set the floor price for each player in advance ahead of the auction.

The players will be drafted in two groups – the first consisting of some 40 players from Sri Lanka and the second, the foreign players.

The draft is being seen as the best way to ensure that player