TORONTO: At the end of a very successful and entertaining season of the Caribbean Premier League, news is out that a similar Canadian venture is on the brink of being launched.
Mr. Roy Singh, Toronto businessman, entrepreneur and founder and CEO of the Canadian Premier League T20 (CPL T20), states the seeds to set up a Canadian Premier League were sown over one and a half years ago.
Roy has tirelessly worked to overcome a number of hurdles that cricket as a sport faces in Canada. “There is no international standard facility in Toronto.
“The current one is greatly lacking and not much has improved over the last decade”, he says, “which is why we fail to attract a lot of the teams and tournaments. The audience turn outs are low because of the current location and added to that is the general lacklustre coverage by the media.”
On the upside he notes, “The time is right for a Canadian Premier League and T20 format tournaments. Cricket fans and cricket followers are beginning to accept the new shortened formats of the T20 games with just 20 overs which generally gets completed in 3 to 3 1/2 hours.”
Roy has the necessary network and links to the who’s who in the cricket world and combined with a determined dream team, he certainly is close to see this established in Canada. The Canadian Premier League T20 founder and CEO says “Despite all the negative publicity received from past attempts to bring international T20 cricket to Canada, the CPL T20 wants to assure all potential players that everything possible will be done to make their experience in Canada a memorable one”
The fabric of Toronto and GTA consists of Canadian immigrants from cricket playing stalwart countries like India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, West Indies and the Caribbean , so it is high time that this international sport is given the respect, status, attention and funding that is long overdue here in Canada. Mr.
Singh goes on to say that “The CPL T20 will consist of top league international cricket stars along with home-grown players from all over Canada. The matches will have good serious cricket with cheerleaders, international singers and performers, and excitement that will keep you on the edge of your seat.”
Chris Gayle, Jamaican player with the Caribbean Premier League and the Australian Big Bash team, says: “If you look at the success of the Caribbean Premier League set up just over a year ago, it speaks volumes for the game of cricket and how it has evolved internationally into its current T20 format.” It has attracted top entrepreneurs and Hollywood actors to lend their names and sponsorships due to its business potential and entertainment value. Hollywood actor Mark Wahlberg recently acquired an equity stake in the Caribbean Premier League team the Barbados Tridents as has Gerard Butler who has a stake in the team Jamaican Tallawahs. The heady and powerful mix of sports and entertainment can no longer be denied. The Canadian Premier League T20 will also have top tier international players and Canadian sponsorship and franchises owned by major Canadian corporations. Mr. Roy Singh and his team will leave no stone unturned to make this venture a viable form of sports and entertainment that will leave its mark on the history of Canadian sports.