Thursday, July 5, 2012

Champions League T20 2012 - 4 IPL teams have direct entry


Last year I had posted on Yuzvendhra Chahal’s exploits in the finals – one cannot be faulted for not remembering because of the overdose of Cricket both at International level and the preponderance in my posts too…   T20 is not even a decade old; it was  launched by the England and Wales Cricket Board in 2003 as a result of a long-term decline in the popularity of county championship and domestic limited-overs cricket. By shortening matches to around three hours, the format was designed to attract a younger crowd and boost attendances. Cricketing nations began adopting the format and creating domestic Twenty20 competitions.  Soon International T20 emerged – the first T20 WC was held in Sept 2007, soon followed by our domestic tournament – the Indian Premier League.


Now after the IPL window, it is going to Champions League and the CL T20 2012 would be  from October 9-28,  of this year.  It will be held in South Africa and will be preceded by a six-team qualifying stage, as was held last year.  At Chennai last year, Mumbai Indians won the Champions League T20 2011 finals.  It was the resoluteness and teamwork of MI that prevailed than any singular individualistic performance


Unlike  last year, the fourth IPL team has got direct entry to the main tournament (In 2011, Kolkata Knight Riders, who had finished fourth that IPL season, had to compete in the qualifiers). The six teams to play in the qualifying stage this year are Pakistan's Sialkot Stallions, New Zealand's Auckland Aces, Trinidad and Tobago from West Indies, one team from Sri Lanka and two from England.  While 4 teams from IPL qualify, West Indies Twenty20 champions Trinidad and Tobago will have to play qualifying matches for the second-year running to make it to the main draw of the Champions League. The eight sides gaining direct entry to the main round of the CLT20 are the top four IPL teams (Mumbai Indians, who are also the CLT20 defending champions, current IPL champions Kolkata Knight Riders, Chennai Super Kings and Delhi Daredevils), Sydney Sixers and Perth Scorchers (from Australia's Big Bash League) and Titans and Lions (South Africa).  Cape Town, Johannesburg, Centurion and Durban have been named as venues for the tournament.

The inaugural edition of the CLT20 - a tournament organised by the boards of India, Australia and South Africa - in 2009 had 12 teams while the 2010 version had 10. Last year, three teams from the qualifying stage made it to the main round, which included seven others.   This year there could be lot of muddle with some players representing more than one club involved in the tournament.  Three of T&T's top players - Dwayne Bravo, Kieron Pollard and Sunil Narine - are contracted to play for IPL teams. But discussions have been initiated with a view to having these players representing T&T in the tournament.

Looking back, in  2011, it was Mumbai Indians who were crowned -  they made 139 with James Franklin being the top scorer.  The star studded RCB could make only 108 with Harbhajan taking 3/20 including that of Chris Gayle and  Yuzvendra Chahal taking 2/9)

In 2010, at Johannesburg, it was Chennai Superkings who beat Warriors for the title triumph.   In the first edition in 2009 at Hyderabad, India, New South Wales made 159 and beat Trinidad & Tobaggo by a handsome margin.  Brett Lee starred with a stunning all-round performance. The match was won and lost in ten overs - the last five of the NSW innings and the first five of T&T

Just in case you don’t know –

Buoyed by the success of IPL, the CL T20 was created.  The Champions League Twenty20, also referred to as the CLT20, is an annual international Twenty20 cricket competition between the top domestic teams from major cricketing nations. The competition was launched in 2008 with the first edition held in October 2009. It is jointly owned by the BCCI, Cricket Australia and Cricket South Africa and is chaired by N. Srinivasan, who is also the president of the BCCI.  The tournament is held between September and October for a period of two to three weeks in either India or South Africa.

So more matches, more money and more time spent on cricket !

With regards – S. Sampathkumar.

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