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IPL deal very much on the cards: ECB officials

England will reap the benefits of their decision to return to India following the Mumbai terrorist attacks.

cricket Updated: Jan 02, 2009 01:01 IST

England will reap the benefits of their decision to return to India following the Mumbai terrorist attacks. The partnership between the two boards is expected to lead to Indian Premier League matches being played in England.

The payback follows intense negotiations between Giles Clarke, the chairman of the ECB, David Collier, the chief executive, and the BCCI's new president Shashank Manohar and secretary, N Srinivasan. A leading ECB official said on Wednesday: “It was absolutely vital that we returned to India after what happened in Mumbai. As a result of all the stuff we went through the two boards got to know each other a lot better and something more than mutual respect has emerged.

“We have come to understand each other's positions — for example we can see exactly where they are coming from with the (rival) Indian Cricket League and as a result I think there is the possibility that the game can go forward in a number of areas. The possibilities are immense.” The ECB believes it is better placed than the Australian board to forge a lucrative partnership with the BCCI, which regards relations between the countries as “at its best phase ever”.

“The Indian diaspora in this country is huge and there would be great support for the IPL franchises over here,” the ECB official added. “It is very clear that the IPL is still gathering momentum.”

The Guardian