The Hindu

Malinga likely to miss first few games

Decides to be with ailing father who may require surgery

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Veteran Sri Lankan pacer Lasith Malinga is likely to be unavailabl­e for the first few games of Mumbai Indians in the upcoming IPL due to personal reasons.

The 36-year-old Malinga will not be travelling to the UAE, where the cash-rich league will be played from September 19 to November 10, as his father has not been keeping well for some time and may require surgery in the coming weeks.

The seasoned fast bowler has produced match-winning efforts for both Sri Lanka and his IPL franchise, wants to be with his father.

Malinga, who will turn 37 next week, last featured for Sri Lanka in a T20 Internatio­nal during the home series against West Indies in March this year, with his last ODI appearance coming more than a year ago.

Dogged by frequent knee injuries in recent times, Malinga did not attend the residentia­l conditioni­ng camps Sri Lanka Cricket organised in June and July.

Malinga, who captained the Sri Lankan T20 World Cup-winning side in 2014, has so far taken 170 wickets in 122 IPL matches at a fine average of 19.8 and an economy rate of 7.14.

The Sri Lankan legend has so far finished with a five-for once and four-wicket hauls six times, with five for 13 being his best in the IPL.

 ?? FILE PHOTO ■ ?? Malinga.
FILE PHOTO ■ Malinga.

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