ICC Champions Trophy 2009 to be launched in Johannesburg on Thursday

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Dubai, Aug.12 (ANI): The ICC Champions Trophy 2009 will be launched in Johannesburg on Thursday.

A number of current and former South Africa cricket players, as well as South African champions from other sports, are expected to be in attendance at the launch, an ICC release said.

For the first time the ICC Champions Trophy will feature only the top eight-ranked sides in the world in the only global multi-team 50-over-a-side tournament between the ICC Cricket World Cup 2007 in the Caribbean and the next edition of that event, in the Asian sub-continent in two years' time.

Those teams - Australia, England, India, New Zealand, Pakistan, host South Africa, Sri Lanka and the West Indies - have been divided into two pools of four, with the top two from each pool progressing to the semi-finals stage.

The action begins on September 22, with South Africa taking on Sri Lanka in a day-night encounter at Centurion and it will end with a day-night final at the same venue on October 5.

Holder Australia begins the defence of its ICC CT crown against the West Indies at the Wanderers on September 26 in a repeat of the 2006 final. (ANI)

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