Sport

Caribbean Premier League engages IMG

Wednesday, May 08, 2013    

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The Caribbean Premier League (CPL) has engaged IMG, the global sports, fashion and media business, to assist in the delivery of the inaugural franchise-based tournament.

IMG will advise on the operational and commercial execution of the tournament and be responsible for television production and media distribution.

IMG has wide-ranging cricket expertise, having represented many of the world's cricket boards over the last 20 plus years, including the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB), Cricket Australia, Cricket South Africa, the Pakistan Cricket Board and Cricket New Zealand as well as the International Cricket Council (ICC).

The company created the Sahara Cup, an annual series of Official One-Day Internationals between India and Pakistan in Canada in the 1990s, and most recently was involved in the creation of the Indian Premier League (IPL) on which it continues to advise the BCCI. IMG has extensive experience of working in the Caribbean, having produced television coverage of international cricket from the region for two decades.

CPL Chief Executive Officer Damien O'Donohoe said he was delighted IMG would be involved in the tournament.

"IMG will bring with them a wealth of commercial, financial and organisational knowledge to aid the CPL team we are assembling," he said.

"They know cricket and they know Twenty20 cricket as they have a proven track record in T20 leagues.

"On top of that, they have worked with several cricket boards over many years and, most notably from our perspective, that includes a long-standing relationship with West Indies cricket, so they know the Caribbean too.

"Having a company with their level of experience across a range of areas will help to ensure we are able to work together and build the necessary platform to produce an exciting and memorable event," added O'Donohoe.

Andrew Wildblood, Executive Vice-President of IMG, said: "It is a privilege for IMG to be involved in the development of the Caribbean Premier League.

"Our long experience of working in the region, allied to our wide ranging involvement in the sport of cricket will enable us to make a valuable contribution to the delivery of the CPL.

"The CPL is a wonderful opportunity for IMG to try to contribute to the next stage of development of cricket in the West Indies. The West Indies is one of the most important cricket regions in the world, a region that every true cricket fan cares about passionately, and one which has contributed so much to international cricket in the past with a flavour and atmosphere all of its own. IMG produced the first ever internationally distributed live coverage of international cricket in the West Indies in 1990 and we have been involved there ever since.

"That West Indies are the current World Twenty20 champions and Chris Gayle's astonishing 175 not out in the IPL adds to the positive feel around this project and we are looking forward to being part of the CPL, which will showcase the fabulous talent that the region continues to produce alongside a wealth of international stars."

The agreement with IMG is the latest part of the organisational structure to be put in place by CPL organisers as the tournament, set to get underway on July 30, moves ever closer.

Six top West Indies stars have already been confirmed as franchise players -- Dwayne Bravo, Chris Gayle, Sunil Narine, Kieron Pollard, Darren Sammy and Marlon Samuels.

Also confirmed are the six overseas icon players -- former Australia captains Adam Gilchrist and Ricky Ponting, ex-New Zealand captain Ross Taylor, Pakistan Twenty20 International captain Mohammad Hafeez, Herschelle Gibbs of South Africa, and Sri Lanka spin wizard Muttiah Muralitharan.

CPL will have six franchises based in Antigua & Barbuda, Barbados, Guyana, Jamaica, St Lucia and Trinidad & Tobago.

Also confirmed is the make-up of the CPL Cricket Committee, which will be chaired by former Jamaica Prime Minister PJ Patterson and include Zorol Barthley, Conde Riley and Walter Scott, QC (West Indies Cricket Board nominees) alongside Ian Bishop, Lance Gibbs and Charles Wilkin, QC (CPL nominees).

A total of 90 players will be contracted to play in the CPL. Each of the six Franchise teams will comprise 15 player squads. All teams are required to have a minimum number of local players from their franchise country. At least four of them must be under the age of 23, and teams can also field a maximum of four international players. The remainder of the team must consist of regional and/or local players.

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