Sat | Dec 10, 2016

Lankan stars confirmed for CPL draft

Published:Saturday | December 20, 2014 | 12:00 AMLeighton Levy
Malinga

Three of Sri Lanka's biggest cricket stars - Mahela Jayawardene, Tilakaratne Dilshan and Lasith Malinga - will be available for the Caribbean Premier League Draft which is set to take place in early 2015.

The competition bowls off in June next year.

The trio will join a host of top class T20 stars, including South African icon, all-rounder Jacques Kallis, as well as the Caribbean's world-famousT20 stars that have included the likes of AndrĂˆ Russell, Chris Gayle, Kieron Pollard and Dwayne Bravo. They say they are looking forward to next season's draft and the subsequent competition.

"I really enjoyed my time in the CPL in 2013 and I'm thrilled to be involved again for the 2015 edition. Caribbean fans are fantastic and it's a pleasure to play cricket in that kind of atmosphere," said Malinga, who represented the Guyana Amazon Warriors in the 2013 competition.

For his part, Dilshan said he hopes he can make an impact on the rapidly growing league that is entering its third season. "CPL seems to be attracting some of the top names in the game, so I am really looking forward to being involved again in 2015 and hope to make my mark on the tournament," he said.

Thousands of visitors

Since its inception in 2013, the Caribbean Premier League has featured packed stadia across the region and has seen an influx of tens of thousands of visitors to the Caribbean, who are eager to witness the action and the excitement up close. More than 65 million people watched last season's competition on television and it also injected an estimated US$166 million into the Caribbean economy. More than US$25 million was realised by the Jamaican economy.

CPL International Cricket director Tom Moody, said now that the CPL is well established there has been a significant amount of interest from some of the world's best players.