SLPL names Afridi, Gayle international icons

Islamabad: West Indies opener Chris Gayle and Pakistan Player Shahid Afridi have been named as the 2 international icon players for the inaugural Sri Lanka Premier League that begins on August 10.

The presence of the duo will join 5 other Sri Lanka players as icons of their own teams, lend the fledgling league some star power and have the possible to boost viewership.Reports propose that Gayle will represent Uva province, while Afridi will play for Nagenahira.

Last week, Sri Lanka Cricket auctioned the 7 Sri Lanka Premier League teams for an average price of 4.3 million dollars, The Daily Times reports.

A number of Indian companies are believed to have successfully bid for teams in the SLPL, highlighting the lure of the permit model in cricket's biggest market despite the BCCI's reluctance to allow Indian players to participate.

The players will be drafted in 2 groups - the first consisting of players from Sri Lanka and the second, the foreign players.

The draft is being seen as the best way to ensure that players are evenly dispersed among the teams, creation it a level playing field.

The SLPL will run for 3 weeks, with the final to be held on August 31. There will be 24 games in total, split between Colombo and Pallekele.

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