Veteran Sri Lankan fast bowler Lasith Malinga is mulling retirement from international cricket saying that he is mentally done with international cricket especially after his Indian Premier League (IPL) career has brought to a premature end.
On Wednesday (February 7), Malinga was appointed as the bowling mentor of the IPL franchise which he played for, the Mumbai Indians, for the eleventh edition.
Malinga has appeared for the Mumbai Indians in 110 matches out of the 157 matches the franchise has played so far.
“Mentally I am over with playing cricket. I don’t think I will play any more international cricket. I am planning to announce my retirement soon,” Slinga Malinga said on the sidelines of St Moritz Ice Cricket Challenge.
Malinga further conceded that it will be tough for him to not don the Mumbai Indians colours at the Wankhede Stadium but his heart knows that the time has come for him to call it quits.
“Everyone gets that signal. Even the great Wasim Akram knew when his time was up,” Malinga asserted.
“I was not surprised at their decision not to have retained me. I had 10 very good years with Mumbai Indians and I achieved a lot. But this year, the owners spoke to me and told me about their vision going forward. They wanted to create a good team for the next three years. I also understand that my time in competitive cricket is over now.”
He is looking forward to a new chapter in his life as a mentor for the most successful team in the IPL.
“I am 34-years-old and not getting any younger. And I feel this is the right time to make a career move. Mumbai Indians had the mentorship role in mind and I am happy to start a new innings,” said Malinga, who has a record 331 T20 wickets across 248 games (international plus franchise).
“My job as a mentor will now give me an opportunity to guide the next crop of fast bowlers. I will pass on my knowledge to them and also it will be an opportunity to assess myself in the coaching arena,” he further added.
Malinga heaped praises on Jasprit Bumrah in the Mumbai Indians outfit and conceded that he is a sensational prospect especially in the shortest format of the game.
“Bumrah has emerged as a great death bowler. He has the skill sets which I also had — bowling at the death overs under pressure. For that you need a different temperament as IPL is a high-pressure tournament,” he said.
“What makes me even more proud is the fact that he has transformed his IPL success into international cricket. I was so happy to see him perform so well in South Africa. His biggest quality is the ability to be consistent,” Malinga concluded.
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