Sri Lanka officials head to India for T20 league talks

Colombo: Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) officials are hopeful that hastily arranged talks with their Indian counterparts will succeed in releasing players from that country to participate in the inaugural Sri Lanka Premier League (SLPL) Twenty20 tournament.

On Sunday, the Indian cricket board (BCCI) advised its cricketers to steer clear of the tournament on the grounds that the SLPL was being organised by a private party based in Singapore.

"Our secretary Nishantha Ranatunga and our chairman D.S. de Silva will be visiting India shortly today or tomorrow to have discussions with the Indian board," SLC media manager Brian Thomas told Reuters on Tuesday.

Singapore-based Somerset Entertainment Ventures owns the commercial rights of the tournament.

Internationals Praveen Kumar, Munaf Patel, Ravichandran Ashwin and Irfan Pathan were among 12 Indian players seeking to participate in the July 19-Aug. 4 tournament but the BCCI refused to grant them its approval.

"The Board`s policy is not to allow players to take part in private party-organised tournaments. We have already informed Sri Lanka Cricket about it," BCCI president Shashank Manohar was quoted as saying by the Press Trust of India news agency.

On Monday, Nishantha Ranatunga said Sri Lanka Cricket would have no financial burden on the tournament and the Singapore company would cover all costs.

West Indian Kieron Pollard, Pakistan`s Shahid Afridi and New Zealand`s Daniel Vettori are among the foreign recruits for the Twenty20 tournament modelled on the successful Indian Premier League (IPL).

Bureau Report

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