India to host inaugural Champions T20 League in Sept

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New Delhi, Jul 30 (UNI) The BCCI today announced that India will host the inaugural Champions Twenty20 League to be held in September-October this year which will have a whopping six million dollars as prize money.

The BCCI, however, was still undecided on the fourth participating country in the Champions League which is jointly held by cricketing boards of India, South Africa and Australia.

''The three boards have reached an agreement to stage the inaugural Champions Twenty20. The 10-day tournament will have eight teams representing the finalists of Twenty20 competition of various domestic leagues. The teams will play 15 matches,'' said a joint statement issued by the three boards after a meeting here today.

Two top domestic teams from India, Australia and South Africa will be seen in action in the tournament, which will be held from September 29 to October 8 and a final decision on the fourth country will be taken later.

Originally, the tournament was to be held in England but BCCI's reservation about the presence of rebel ICL players in English counties and other issues forced the board to change the venue.

The England Cricket Board is now trying to launch its own version of Champions League in Sharjah.

The finalists from the Indian Premier League (IPL), KFC Big Bash Twenty20 organised by Cricket Australia (CA), and the Standard Bank Pro20 conducted by Cricket South Africa (CSA) will vie for the honours.

''The success of the IPL has undoubtedly captured the imagination of cricket supporters from around the world,'' Chairman and Commissioner of the IPL and BCCI vice-president Lalit Modi said.

''The Champions Twenty20 League, which will be played by (the) eight best teams from the world which have earned their place through their domestic competitions, provides a new and exciting pinnacle for club championships across the world.

''It will provide teams with the opportunity to earn the title of World Club Champions in a format which will be eagerly anticipated by spectators and players alike,'' Modi added.

Along with Modi, Cricket Australia CEO James Sutherland, Cricket South Africa CEO Gerald Majola, IPL CEO Sunder Raman and ICC's principal advisor I S Bindra held were also present to decide on the event.

UNI RAR PDT KP2105

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