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Malinga, Mendis recalled home immediately from Big Bash

20 January 2014 12:12 am - 27     - {{hitsCtrl.values.hits}}


Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) has decided to call back their stars Lasith Malinga and Ajantha Mendis with immediate effect to Sri Lanka from Australia where they are currently playing in the cash-rich Big Bash T20 domestic league sources, SLC Secretary Nishantha Ranatunga said.

Ranatunga said that they communicated their decision to the relevant players who will now return to the island tomorrow.

“We felt it is important for all national squad players to undergo a strict training regime in the next few weeks as Sri Lanka has a heavy schedule ahead. The decision to call back Lasith and Ajantha were taken in consultation with our coaches and national selectors” Ranatunga said.

Chief national selector Sanath Jayasuriya confirmed that he asked the SLC to recall Malinga and Mendis with immediate effect as he felt training was imperative for both players.

“We have a crucial period of cricket ahead of us including the Asia Cup and ICC World T20 scheduled within the next two months. The series against Bangladesh is also coming up. We have to get into some serious team building if we are to stay competitive. I asked Lasith and Ajantha to return immediately and start working with our coaches and trainers” Jayasuriya said.

Asked if the selectors have changed their mind over Malinga and have decided to include him in the series against Bangladesh, Jayasuriya confirmed that Malinga would be considered if he falls in line with their guidelines.

“You have to admit that Malinga has a serious fitness issue. That is why we decided to drop him after the ODI Series against Pakistan. But if he shows serious intentions and is willing work hard and improve himself, if he is ready to show commitment towards national duty, then we feel it is unfair to leave him out. He is obviously a world class bowler. So, we want him to prove himself by coming back from the Big Bash and working with our coaches and trainers and get back to his full fitness in the next few days” explained Jayasuriya.

The legendary former Sri Lanka skipper also pointed out that they were not impressed by the “Big Bash” which kept Malinga in cold storage for extended periods which made them feel the slinger would be better off to be in constant training with the local staff.

“Malinga’s team played their last match on January 11 and their next match is not scheduled till January 21. It is an extended gap” Jayasuriya said. Malinga plays for the “Melbourne Stars” and has captured only five wickets in five matches.

Jayasuriya also revealed that Malinga telephoned him after the SLC directive to return to Sri Lanka and admitted that he has a fitness issue which he is keen to address. “He knows that we are keen to help him out and have the patience to manage him and assist him cope with his injury in order to prolong his international career. It is a very encouraging sign and we hope everything will turn out well for the country” said Jayasuriya.

The 30-year old star with an uncanny action retired from Test cricket citing a 'degenerative condition' in his right knee in April 2011. “Although I am sufficiently fit to play both ODI and T20 cricket, I have a long-standing degenerative condition in my right knee that needs to be carefully managed,” Malinga said in his statement when he retired from Tests.

Even after that decision, Malinga opted to play in several lucrative domestic T20 leagues around the world including the Indian Premier League, which made him one of the highest earners in world cricket.

Meanwhile, Melbourne Stars have reportedly written to SLC requesting them to allow Malinga to stay in Australia and follow a training schedule from his Sri Lanka trainers. If it was not possible, they have asked the SLC to release him for just two days on February 4 and 5 for the semi finals. (Channaka de Silva)
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  Comments - 27

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  • Gayan Monday, 20 January 2014 02:52 PM

    Best bowler for IPL you mean.

    Saman Monday, 20 January 2014 08:32 AM

    Agree ! its more of a fitness . money and jealousy spoils the spirit. at the end playing cricket is his living !!

    Correction Monday, 20 January 2014 08:34 AM

    Despite their cricketing talents only money and more money inspires Malinga,, just like Jayasuriya and Aravinda before him. That's the plain truth. He'll say " National loyalty won't feed my belly"

    Chief Justice Monday, 20 January 2014 04:11 PM

    These issues are beyond cricket. The issues range from jealousy on the part of no hopers like Nishntha R and former heroes turned zeroes like Sanath J.
    Also those like Malinga have fears of their longevity in cricket. They want to make maximum bucks before they are discarded.
    Many professionals such as doctors have made use of free education in state medical faculties and now shamelessly parade their wealth and achievements abroad.
    So let us not be hypocritical. Let the cricketers of their own accord decide what is best for them. In the process they will make mistakes and learn. Did not the late Anura Ranasinghe miss a great opportunity of World Cup glory in 1996 and his Apartheid Sri Lankan mates such as Warnapura lose out?!
    The prevalent world view is to maximise your profits between birth and death! If that is all that there is to life good luck to Nishantha, Sanath, Malinga, Ex SL professionals and everybody who believes in that worldview!

    simpath Monday, 20 January 2014 08:37 AM

    Malinga is sri lanka's best bowler you idiots are talking non sense

    ManThillekerathne Monday, 20 January 2014 03:17 AM

    No use of Malinga. Only five wickets in five matches. Let a youngster to get some experience.

    Jagath Leanage Monday, 20 January 2014 04:38 PM

    Malinga is not a team player now.

    Jesus Monday, 20 January 2014 05:15 PM

    National side is loosing these guys are making money,
    Way of the mojority race in this country .
    All out to sell the country for money ...

    Sunimal Monday, 20 January 2014 03:27 AM

    His knee will automatically heal if he was offered lucrative package for Test Matches.

    lesson Monday, 20 January 2014 09:24 AM

    So malinga is being taught a lesson on fitness i guess....

    RS Monday, 20 January 2014 03:42 AM

    Right thing to Do!

    jude Monday, 20 January 2014 03:45 AM

    Why don't you omit Malinga for Bangali Tour???!!!!..It sounds like more than Malinga, SLC wants him in SL team badly and desperately???!!!

    Roshan Tuesday, 21 January 2014 04:40 AM

    Yes, what do you say about the SLC officials who have played out Millions from the Board.

    jena Monday, 20 January 2014 10:08 AM

    i remember, sanath playing all the ipl matches during 2008-2010, and he too retired from test cricket far early..

    ANTON Monday, 20 January 2014 04:20 AM


    chinthaka Tuesday, 21 January 2014 05:01 AM

    good comment!

    Dammika Monday, 20 January 2014 04:25 AM

    We cannot comment on any cricketing issue with players ... because we cannot hear the players side of any issue. These players have done wonders to SL ... lets not forget about that too.

    Don Quixote Monday, 20 January 2014 04:38 AM

    Give Jayasuriya part of your earnings Malinga, then you can stay.

    Upul Tuesday, 21 January 2014 01:31 AM

    Malinga is the world class baller and wonder why lot of people jealous about his earning. He earns money on his talent.

    warra Monday, 20 January 2014 11:27 AM

    If anyone would ask me, Malinga is an over-rated bowler who does his own thing.

    Nihar Tuesday, 21 January 2014 05:38 AM

    Malinga is definitely a very good talented bowler. The Problem is the temperament he has towards the game is monetary related. Yes, there should be monetary gain, but not at the dispense of self dignity, patriotism. I still believe the 1996 team was respected and they eventually won the world cup was due to this factor . Whatever said and done the Arjuna era had sincere Cricketers and to this date they remembered as heroes. Until we put the country, the love for the game itself as priority,we are never gonna be successful as the 1996 team. The cricket team of sri lanka should represent the nature of the Sri Lankans( which was very much visible with Arjuna and the team). But today we are just the Sri Lankan cricket team..very sad.

    Ruwan Siriwardane Tuesday, 21 January 2014 05:49 AM


    Sim Monday, 20 January 2014 05:18 AM

    If he is not good why recall him?

    Kiris Baba Amaray Monday, 20 January 2014 05:22 AM

    Malinga is greedy for "Big Money", rather than relying on him consider only on Mendis.

    Kiris Baba Amaray Monday, 20 January 2014 05:24 AM

    You are correct, Malinga should be thrown out and then our team will prosper.

    Roshan Monday, 20 January 2014 05:28 AM

    SLC is taking the revenge on Malinga, only God knows the reason.

    Buwa Monday, 20 January 2014 12:48 PM

    luckily nobody asked you :)

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