COLOMBO: The third edition of the Lanka Premier League (LPL) will take place from July 31 to August 21, Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) has confirmed. The registration of international players for the player draft “will commence shortly,” added an SLC media release. Despite speculation that this year’s tournament might see the addition of a sixth team, SLC has confirmed that it will remain a five-team tournament. Like last year, the group stage games will take place at the R Premadasa Stadium in Colombo, while the action will then shift to the MRICS in Hambantota for the Qualifiers, Eliminator and final. The tournament will see a total of 24 games played. “We are extremely happy to announce the 3rd edition of the Lanka Premier League, which has started its journey toward carving a place in the global T20 League competitions, as a formidable tournament,” SLC president Shammi Silva stated in the release. Jaffna have won both editions of the tournament in 2020 and 2021, initially under the Stallions moniker and then a second time after being rebranded the Kings by its new owners. The Galle Gladiators have been the losing finalists on both occasions. The LPL will be part of a packed schedule for Sri Lanka’s cricketers leading up to October’s T20 World Cup in Australia. While the match dates for the tournament are yet to be announced, the July 31 start indicates a short turnaround for those involved in Pakistan’s July tour of Sri Lanka, the exact dates of which are to be finalised. Then in September, Sri Lanka are set to host the Asia Cup before heading off to Australia for the global tournament.