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Stanford aims for world domination

American billionaire Sir Allen Stanford believes an investment of 500million could make Twenty20 cricket the most "dominant team sport in the world".

Stanford is currently in discussions with the England and Wales Cricket Board over the possibility of setting up a series of lucrative international challenge matches and a rival to the Indian Premier League.

"What's the goal? The goal would be for Twenty20 cricket to be the dominant team sport in the world." The Texan told BBC Sport.

He added: "I wouldn't even talk about going forward with this unless we had a billion dollars, 500million, in cash reserves to make this thing work.

"I think with that you've got the financial legs to stand on, the ability to set up something that would have the success you guys want 10 years down the road."

Stanford has offered to fund five annual Twenty20 matches between England and his 'All-Star' side, each with a winner-takes-all prize pot of 10million.

Yet the current boom in Twenty20 cricket is now largely being fuelled by the big-money IPL, and Stanford is keen to get involved in an English equivalent.

The ECB, who have described talks with Stanford as "positive and constructive", are exploring options in order to limit the impact of the IPL on the domestic game.

The IPL offers huge wages for a tournament that lasts just six weeks and there were fears the ECB could lose centrally-contracted players or counties could be adversely affected.


source - pa.press.net
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