The Lanka Premier League 2021 has suffered a major blow just a month ahead of the tournament's second edition. The contracts of two franchises - Colombo Kings and Dambulla Viiking - have notably been terminated because of an alleged breach of contract. While it was initially reported that the respective teams had pulled out, it was later confirmed that it was the decision of the tournament's organizers (IPG Group and SLC).
Reflecting on the same, SLC vice-president Ravin Wickramaratne said, "Those two franchises (Kings and Viiking) have [been] terminated, but I've received other potential franchisees, whose details have been sent to the ICC for them to check. I can't reveal who the owners of those teams are yet, but the other three team owners (of Galle Gladiators, Kandy Tuskers and Jaffna Stallions) are still there."
Tournament to continue as planned
Mr. Wickramaratne also confirmed that LPL 2021 will continue as planned and will take place from July 30 to August 22. However, it will continue to be a 5-team tournament just like the previous edition, with two new franchises coming in to replace Colombo Kings (led by Angelo Mathews) and Dambulla Viiking (led by Dasun Shanaka).
The entire tournament is expected to be hosted at Mahinda Rajapaksa International Cricket Stadium in Sooriyawewa this year to maintain a bio-bubble amid the ongoing pandemic and reducing logistical issues.