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Pakistan catches Twenty20 cricket fever

Published: Friday, April 15, 2005, 23:53 [IST]
 
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Karachi:Pakistan has caught the Twenty20 cricket bug and will hold its first domestic tournament featuring the game's rapid one-day version later this month, an official said.

"We are pleased to announce the first ever Twenty20 tournament in which teams from 11 regions will be competing from April 25-30," Pakistan Cricket Board chairman Shaharyar Khan said on Friday.

Twenty20, in which sides play 20 overs each, was introduced in England two years ago and has proved a huge success, attracting more crowds than some normal matches.

Khan said he hoped Pakistan's experiment with the new form would be entertaining and win a big audience.

"The holding of the event will mark a new era of cricket in Pakistan and it will generate interest," said Khan.

The 11 teams are divided in two pools of four and a third pool with three teams. The top teams from each pool will play a triangular series on April 29 followed by the final on April 30.

The winners of the inaugural Twenty20 tournament will pocket 5,000 dollars and the runners-up will get 2,500 dollars.

Pakistan is also considering whether to hold a Twenty20 side game when England tours here from October-December this year.

A Twenty20 cricket match was part of Pakistans tour to Australia and Australia will also play England in a Twenty20 game in this summer's Ashes series.

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