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India ponders IPL format in post-Modi era

Sports Desk |
Update: 2010-06-24 21:39:22

NEW DELHI: India`s cricket chiefs on Friday moved to make a new start for the scandal-hit Indian Premier League, hoping to dispel doubts over the event`s future in the absence of its creator Lalit Modi.

The Indian cricket board (BCCI) met representatives of the 10 teams and held a meeting of the IPL`s governing council to draw up a roadmap on how to conduct future editions of the glitzy Twenty20 tournament.

The agenda included details of the 2011 event, modalities for a fresh auction of players and the tournament format following the inclusion of two new franchises to the existing eight.

"Nothing has been finalised yet, we will arrive at a decision after consulting all stakeholders," interim IPL chief Chirayu Amin told reporters after the gathering.

The two new franchises -- Pune and Kochi -- joined six others in asking the BCCI to consider putting up all the players for auction since initial three-year contracts had run out.

Only Mumbai Indians, which has batting icon Sachin Tendulkar on its rolls, and Chennai Super Kings, who own Indian captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni, wanted a few players to be retained with their original teams.

Modi was suspended as IPL commissioner after the conclusion of the third edition in April following allegations of corruption, tax evasion and money-laundering in the tournament, which sparked a government probe.

The controversy caused the resignation of a government minister and overshadowed the climax of the 2010 edition, won by the Super Kings.

Modi, the driving force behind the hugely popular competition, has replied to charges against him which have been sent to a disciplinary committee of the BCCI.

In the meeting Friday, the franchises also requested permission to raise the maximum amount for players` salaries to nine million dollars a year instead of the seven million dollars agreed earlier.

The duration of next year`s tournament, which takes place soon after the cricket World Cup in the sub-continent from February 17 to April 2, is also being debated.

The franchises want the existing system of home and away matches to stay, which means 94 matches will have to be played due to the addition of two new teams.

The Times of India said the BCCI is in favour of cutting down the number of matches by dividing the teams into two groups to prevent player burn-out.

"We have all expressed our views," Vijaya Mallya, who owns the Royal Challengers Bangalore franchise, said on Thursday.
"Most of us want the salary cap to be raised to nine million dollars. We also hope that the format of the tournament does not change and that players are available to all at the auction."

The BCCI has asked three former Indian captains and IPL governing council members Mansur Ali Khan Pataudi, Sunil Gavaskar and Ravi Shastri to decide on the final format, Amin said.

BDST: 1830hrs, June 25, 2010

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