Sri Lanka Premier League 2012 Preview, Live Streaming options
Cricket embraces itself for yet another addition of a domestic tournament with international reach as Sri Lanka is all set to kick off its own T20 Premier League.
A novel concept just over five years ago, the T20 leagues have propped up almost everywhere now with IPL, BPL and Big Bash amongst the already-established leagues attracting international players.
Sri Lanka’s time has also finally arrived, delayed by a year you may say. The league was cancelled last year just weeks ahead of its scheduled start following a cold war with BCCI over the participation of Indian players.
That standoff does not seem to have progressed much with no Indian players featuring in this year’s edition either.
One of the reasons why BCCI resisted was the association of Somerset Entertainment Ventures with the league. The company is the organizer and marketer of the league and is alleged to have had ties with Lalit Modi who is no longer in BCCI’s good books.
The claim has been strongly denied by Modi, Somerset Entertainment Ventures as well as SLC and the league now looks set to take off.
The format of the league sees seven provincial sides playing each other once before the top four advance to the knockouts.
With 24 matches scheduled over 20 days, the league is nowhere near the scale of IPL but for a tiny island nation such as Sri Lanka, even this is huge.
The tournament has had a few setbacks though with key players such as Chris Gayle, Kumar Sangakkara and Fidel Edwards having to withdraw due to injuries.
Despite that, the fans have lots to look forward to including Shahid Afridi, Kemar Roach and Imran Nazir taking the field.
The league was able to rope in a leading Indian automobile manufacturer - Mahindra & Mahindra - as the title sponsor and several other Indian businesses are also involved with some of the teams.
The tournament will be broadcast by ESPNStar in selected Asian regions while YouTube will serve the league to a worldwide audience.
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