Sri Lanka Cricket launches premier league to emulate Indian riches

May 10, 2012 (LBO) – Sri Lanka Cricket on Thursday announced plans to launch its own Twenty20 premier league in August, as it hopes to capitalise on the commercial success of the money-spinning Indian Premier League (IPL). Twenty20²s massive popularity and status as the most exciting and entertaining format of cricket will be further enhanced by this newest tournament to the world of cricket, Sri Lanka Cricket said.

The inaugural Sri Lanka Premier League (SLPL) will get underway in Colombo and Pallekele between August 10-31, the main governing body said. International players will be playing in the SLPL alongside Sri Lankan national cricketers and young Sri Lankan hopefuls, the statement said.

The 24-match tournament comes just weeks ahead of the World Twenty20 tournament which opens in Sri Lanka on September 18.

In 2011, Sri Lanka had to put off plans to launch the first edition of the SLPL in July, after the organisers were unable to attract top Indian players as they were touring England during that period.

Sri Lanka Cricket said the first edition will feature seven provincial teams, each having six foreign players in their squad but with a provision that only four can be fielded in a playing