Malinga shares trade se­crets with Stoi­nis

Daily Mirror (Sri Lanka) - - SPORTS -

Af­ter Sri Lanka’s de­feat to Aus­tralia in their fi­nal ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2019 warm-up game, an un­usual pair hung back to prac­tise a few de­liv­er­ies.

La­sith Malinga, the Sri Lanka vet­eran pacer, was seen shar­ing tips with Aus­tralia all-rounder Marcus Stoi­nis about how to send down a slower ball.

The slow ball is a vari­a­tion that Malinga sees as his wicket-tak­ing op­tion. It was also some­thing he un­leashed while bowl­ing the last over of the In­dian Premier League 2019 fi­nal, pulling off a re­mark­able one-run vic­tory for Mum­bai In­di­ans af­ter back­ing him­self to bowl the slower ball as his fi­nal de­liv­ery against Chen­nai Su­per Kings.

“Vari­a­tions is very im­por­tant in the short­for­mat game. Dur­ing IPL also he (Stoi­nis) had wanted to know how I bowl [it],” Malinga ex­plained to press per­sons af­ter the match in Southamp­ton on Mon­day.

“I wanted to give him tips – that’s how cricket moves for­ward. Who­ever wants to know, I will help them. I’ll share tricks on how to bowl slow balls, which sit­u­a­tion you will use it, why you want to use the slow one.”

At 35, Malinga might have lost some of his pace, but his vari­a­tions have en­sured he re­mains one of the can­ni­est bowlers at the death. Ac­cord­ing to him, it comes from putting in the ex­tra work af­ter train­ing, send­ing down at least “12 to 18 balls” by us­ing vari­a­tions, and chal­leng­ing your­self to con­cen­trate, be ac­cu­rate and train skills even when you are tired af­ter a ses­sion.

It’s how he’s de­vel­oped the skill, and com­bined with his knack to read the game, his con­fi­dence in his abil­i­ties as a death bowler is high.“skill comes first, then you have to an­a­lyse the game. That’s two things a bowler needs to [do well],” he said. Iden­ti­fy­ing Jasprit Bum­rah and Kag­iso Rabada as two young play­ers he con­sid­ers the best at bowl­ing in the death, Malinga also high­lighted the value of a strong and var­ied bowl­ing at­tack.“cricket is a bats­man’s game,” he agreed,“but bowlers can change

the game.”

I wanted to give him tips – that’s how cricket moves for­ward.

La­sith Malinga shar­ing tips with Marcus Stoi­nis

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