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Sri Lanka’s newly appointed head of the Lankan Premier League tournament, Russel Arnold says that the skill levels of country’s players have fallen behind due to the lack of a competitive franchise-based tournament with the participation of overseas professionals.

Russel Arnold was announced as Director of LPL last week. All Sri Lanka’s south Asian neighbours have flourishing franchise based tournaments and Arnold is confident of creating a vibrant competition of Sri Lanka’s own.

Arnold told Cricbuzz “We need something like this. We are falling behind our skill levels. There’s a huge interest for franchise-based competition and that culture is there. It’s a good opportunity for players to showcase their talent and get them play under pressure and develop their skill levels.”

SLC had launched Sri Lanka Premier League in 2011 but the tournament was unsuccessful and had to be abandoned a year later due to lack of sponsors. The board is careful not to repeat the mistakes of the past.

Arnold added “We need to make the tournament something that everyone looks forward to. Not just the players, but fans, owners and everyone. I am confident that we can make this a success. There’s plenty of interest already and that excites me.”

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