The 2012 World Twenty20 will be held between September 18 and October 12, 2012 in Sri Lanka the ICC have confirmed. Colombo, Pallekele and Hambantota will be the venues for the men's tournament, while the women's group games will be played in Galle.
The format will see four groups of three in a preliminary round. England, the defending champions, and India are in Group A and will be joined by one of the Associate or Affiliate teams that qualify. The other qualifying team will be in Group B with West Indies and Australia. Sri Lanka, South Africa and Zimbabwe make up Group C, and Pakistan, New Zealand and Bangladesh are in Group D.
The top two teams in each group will make it through the preliminary round, after which there will be a Super Eight stage, featuring two groups. The format is essentially the same as the last edition in 2010, though there are four fewer teams this time.
The tournament will include two teams qualifying from the ICC World Twenty20 Qualifier 2012, which will be staged in the United Arab Emirates from March 13-14 2012.
Hosts Sri Lanka will play the tournament's opening fixture against Zimbabwe in Hambantota. England begin their defence against a qualifying team on September 21 and will then play India in Colombo on September 23.
The women's tournament has Australia, India and England in one group with a qualifying team, and New Zealand, West Indies and Sri Lanka with the other qualifying team in the other. The men's and women's semi-finals and finals will be played on the same day, in Colombo. The semi-finals are on October 4 and October 5 with the finals on October 7.
Tickets for the tournament are planned to go on sale to the public from March 1, 2012 and will be available via website and box-office sales in Sri Lanka. The ICC's chief executive Haroon Lorgat assured they would be reasonably priced.
"We all know how passionate and loyal the Sri Lankan public is towards our sport and we will ensure the tickets are affordable so that they can enjoy the event," he said at the launch of the tournament in Colombo. "Following the success of the recent ICC Cricket World Cup 2011, I am confident that the hosts, Sri Lanka, will deliver a world-class event."
Lorgat also said the tournament was another opportunity to promote women's cricket. "I am happy that the men's and women's semi-finals and finals will once again be played on the same days at the same venues. We remain committed to showcase women's cricket in this way, which is unique in the world of team sports."