For the third time in a row, the Pakistan players have been snubbed by the Indian Premier League, which means there will be no Pak players in the next season of the T20 league. IPL's newly appointed chairman Rajiv Shukla, who had earlier said that it would be up to the franchises to take a decision on Pakistan players whether to buy them or not, said: "Pakistan players issue was not even in the agenda. So there is no question of discussion." Another important decision that the Governing Council took in Hyderabad is that there will be nine teams participating in 2012 after the Kochi franchise was expelled from the league last month. This means that there will be a new format of the IPL. It is learnt that the IPL is likely to go back to its home and away format and the number of matches will increase. It was also learnt that Kochi players like S Sreesanth, Mahela Jayawardene, Muttiah Muralidharan and VVS Laxman may be up for auction. However, the IPL governing council said: "The player regulation and trading modalities will be discussed at the next meeting of the GC." Shukla also said that no decision has been taken on the Kochi players and that the management has been asked to work out the possible options. He, however, said that the interest of the players will be protected. The dates of the IPL 2012 have also been confirmed. The tournament will begin in Chennai on 4 April 2012, and end on 27 May 2012. An opening ceremony will be held in Chennai on 3 April, a day before the inaugural game. When asked about the player fatigue issue, Shukla said: "Won't agree that because of IPL fatigue caused."