Majority of internationals prefer to play for IPL teams

New Delhi, Aug 30 (IANS) Majority of international cricket stars have preferred to play for Indian Premier League (IPL) franchises after being named by more than one squad in the Champions League Twenty20 starting Sep 17.

The players, who preferred to play for their IPL franchises are Dwayne Bravo, Kevon Cooper, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Faf du Plessis, Mike Hussey, Mitchell Johnson, Albie Morkel, Chris Morris, Thisara Perera, Kieron Pollard and Shane Watson

Sri Lankan star Kumar Sangakkara is the only top star who has chosen to play for his home team Kandurata Maroons instead of his IPL team Sunrisers Hyderabad.

Explaining the process for deciding which teams these players would represent, CLT20 Governing Council member and Director of Legal and Business Affairs, Dean Kino, said: "Players who were named by more than one team were asked to select which team they were going to play for. The teams were then allowed to replace any player that withdrew from their squad and elected to play for another side."

Tournament regulations state that when a player elects to play for their 'away' team, that team must pay the 'home' team $150,000 compensation per player. A 'home' team is classified as a team from the country a player is eligible to represent in international cricket.

"This payment is applicable for 10 of the 12 players that were eligible for more than one team. The exceptions are Kumar Sangakkara, who will be representing Kandurata Maroons, which is classified as his home team, and Thisara Perera, who qualified for the Brisbane Heat and Hyderabad Sunrisers, neither of which is classified as his home team," Kino added.

The CLT20 2013 will follow a format similar to the two previous editions, with a Group Stage preceded by a Qualifier. A total of 29 matches will be played in the tournament by the best domestic T20 teams from around the world, for total prize money of $6 million.

The Qualifier, to be played from Sep 17 to Sep 20, will feature four teams: Q1 - Otago Volts (New Zealand's HRV Cup champions), Q2 - Sunrisers Hyderabad (Fourth-ranked team in the Pepsi IPL 2013), Q3 - Kandurata Maroons, the winner of Sri Lanka's domestic T20 competition, and Q4 - Faisalabad Wolves (Pakistan's domestic T20 Champions).

The top two will advance to the group stage. Q1/Q3 will enter Group A, if either of them makes it to the Group Stage. Q2/Q4 will enter Group B, if either of them makes it.

If Q1 and Q3 both make it to the Group Stage, then Q1 will enter Group A, and Q3 will enter Group B. If Q2 and Q4 both make it to the Group Stage, then Q2 will enter Group B, and Q4 will enter Group A.

The Group Stage will commence with a clash between Mumbai Indians, IPL 2013 winners, and the Rajasthan Royals, the third-ranked team in the IPL, in Jaipur, Sep 21.

Mumbai Indians and Rajasthan Royals apart, Group A will comprise Highveld Lions (winner of South Africa's domestic T20 competition), Perth Scorchers (KFC T20 Big Bash League runner-up), and a team from the Qualifier.

Group B will comprise Brisbane Heat (Big Bash League champion), Trinidad & Tobago (West Indies T20 champion), Chennai Super Kings (runner-up in the Pepsi IPL 2013), Titans (South Africa's domestic T20 runners-up), and a team from the Qualifier.

The top team from Group A will play the second-ranked team from Group B in the first semi-final, in Jaipur, Oct 4. The top team from Group B will play the second-ranked team from Group A in the second semi-final, in Delhi, Oct 5. The final is slated for Oct 6.

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