Organisers of the now popular Caribbean Premier League (CPL)↔T20 tournament have been forced to push for a late start next year, to ensure that some of the best players are available to visit the Caribbean and play.
This was revealed by COO of the CPL Pete Russell at the Queen’s Park Oval yesterday.
He said the start will take place in early August and ends in the first week of September.
This means that although some of the top players across the world can come to play, the West Indies Test cricketers who play the T20 format will miss out, as the West Indies will be on tour of England from early August.
According to Russell: “We start in early August and ends in early September.
“We will have the same teams and we will play a total of 34 matches, just as we had this past year. Where we start and where the finals are to be played is still to be worked out.”
Russell said the CPL would love to have the finals in T&T. “We would love for T&T to host the finals because it is our number one venue. We love the energy of the finals here with the packed ground and stuff, so that will be great.”
Russell said that officials of the CPL have already visited the Brian Lara Stadium in Tarouba and talks will be held as to the possibility of hosting matches at the venue.
The T&T Guardian exclusively reported that the opening ceremonies of the 2017 CPL will take place at the southern venue.
“It is great for Trinidad to have another first class venue to play cricket. We have had a look at the stadium and we have noticed a dramatic improvement in the amount of work done there.
“What we saw is a state of the art facility and we will definitely look into this venue, it is going to be interesting to see how it pans out. We are excited by the prospect and a venue with (Brian) Lara’s name attached to it has to be high quality.”
Russell also added that the CPL will definitely head to the United States.
“We are definitely going back to US because it was hugely successful. We had 30,000 fans attending the six games there and this was a record for cricket at Broward. It is brilliant for the people of America as they showed by their attendance that they want cricket there.”
Russell said that CPL has enjoyed their four years in the Caribbean and is looking forward to even better times.
“We want to benefit the economy financially and also help to build West Indies cricket at the same time.
“We have a very good tournament here that can stand up with the rest in the world and as a matter of fact, outside of IPL, the CPL attracts the best players in the world. We start with great talent here in the West Indies and add some world class players from outside.”