Johannesburg: The Sri Lanka Premier League (SLPL) Twenty20 tournament for this year has reportedly been scrapped by the country`s cricket administrators after franchise holders defaulted on payments for the tournament and failed to guarantee payments to players.
According to Sri Lankan Cricket (SLC) officials, all seven franchises for the SLPL, which were held by Indian companies, had failed to meet several deadlines to pay nearly three million dollars.
Confirming the fact, SLPL Director Ajit Jayasekera said that SLC has decided to sack all the seven franchise holders as they did not pay despite verbal and sometimes written assurances that they will, adding that for that reason, they had decided to terminate franchise agreements and scrap the tournament for this year.
According to Jayasekera, the authorities are hoping to come up with a new model for a T20 tournament next year, adding that the franchise holders initially agreed to pay a total of 30.49 million dollars spread over seven years but had failed to pay their annual dues for this year by last Sunday`s deadline.
According to a report, Sri Lanka played its inaugural T20 last August with a handful of big-name foreign players, including Chris Gayle from the West Indies and Pakistan`s Shahid Afridi.
Officials further said that the tournament, modelled on the financially lucrative Indian Premier League, made a profit of about 2.2 million dollars for the SLC last year.