West Indies will host the inaugural edition of their Twenty20 Caribbean Premier League in July and August this year. A total of 90 cricketers have been signed by the organisers for the tournament which will see 32 matches in all. Plus, the tournament will be broadcast world-wide.
The League is eyeing six participating countries as the six franchises. Ongoing negotiations are on with Antigua, Barbados, Guyana, Jamaica, St. Lucia and Trinidad and Tobago.
Based on the performances and stats, the organisers have chosen top six players to be contracted with their regions, ensuring each team has a West Indian star as a marquee player.
The contracted franchise stars are Chris Gayle, Darren Sammy, Dwayne Bravo, Kieron Pollard, Marlon Samuels and Sunil Narine.
CPL's founder and chairman Ajmal Khan was joined by WICB president Julian Hunte, WICB CEO Michael Muirhead, MD of Verus International Dirk Hall and CEO of Commune Jamie Stewart at a media event that launched the event on Tuesday in Barbados.
"The CPL will showcase the beauty and talent of the Caribbean to the world. The best cricketers that the West Indies has to offer playing alongside their international counterparts, coupled with celebrity appeal from Hollywood, Bollywood and local and international music talent with the carnival atmosphere for which the Caribbean is world-renowned and indeed envied, is sure to draw the attention of current and new cricket fans across the globe," said Khan.
He added: "We're going to make sure that all eyes are on the shores of the Caribbean in July and August."
Talking about the financial benefits the league entails, Khan said, "I have witnessed first-hand the resurgence and revitalisation of communities and even countries when new businesses and industries are introduced into their economies, particularly those with such global reach. I believe that the Caribbean Premier League will have a tremendous economic impact, not only for the six franchise countries but also for the entire region."
The CPL chief also revealed further details about regional and international franchise player information, event dates, potential franchise countries, plans for player development in the region, tournament logo and the terms of agreement between the League and the WICB.