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Sri Lanka's cricket authorities on Friday announced a delayed start to its scaled down Twenty20 premier league, without the expected international players.

After weeks of uncertainty, Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) has finally decided to defer the controversial Sri Lanka Premier League (SLPL) to August next year. The decision was taken at a meeting between the organisers SLC and commercial-rights owners Somerset Entertainment Ventures. In place of the SLPL, SLC will hold the usual inter-provincial Twenty20 tournament featuring five domestic sides without involving any overseas players.

Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) have confirmed the dates for the first edition of the Sri Lanka Premier League will be from July 19 to August 4, 2011. The seven provinces will play 24 matches over the 18 days, all of which will be telecast live globally. That suggests a format in which all the teams will play each other once in a league stage, before two semi-finals and a final.

The Pakistan Cricket Board on Monday said it had given clearance to former captain Shahid Afridi to take part in the inaugural Sri Lankan Premier League starting later this month.

Sri Lankan Cricket stung by the refusal of the Indian cricket authorities to release their players for next month's Sri Lankan Premier League T20 tournament have started to rope in more Pakistani cricketers for the event.

Tainted former IPL commissioner Lalit Modi is not associated with the Sri Lanka Premier League in any capacity, according to the tournament's marketing partner Somerset Entertainment Ventures (SEV).

Sri Lanka Cricket will push ahead with its inaugural premier league with Australian and Pakistani players, despite a no-show by Indian stars, the island's sports minister said on Sunday.

Sri Lankan cricket officials will meet Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) bosses in Mumbai Wednesday to convince them to allow Indian players to participate in the forthcoming Sri Lanka Premier League (SLPL).

Cricket Australia (CA) is likely to allow its players to participate in next month's inaugural Sri Lanka Premier League (SLPL) Twenty20 tournament.