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Lasith Malinga to retire after 2019 World Cup

Sri Lankan bowler Lasith Malinga says that he will retire from international cricket after the 2019 Cricket World Cup.

The fast bowler quit Test cricket because of a “long-standing
degenerative condition in the right knee” in 2011, but he continued playing the shorter formats.

One of the best fast bowlers to have ever played for Sri Lanka, Malinga isn’t part of the 23 man squad for the tour to Bangladesh but was present at a special practice session with new coach Chandika Hathurusingha in Colombo.

For the right arm pacer, the 2019 ICC World Cup is his next target, and if he does make it to England, that will be his swansong.

“If they pick me I’m ready, but the reason for why I haven’t been picked is what I’m still waiting for,” Malinga said. “Usually it’s a player who is 25 or 26 that needs to be rested because they still have a lot of cricket left in them. But for someone of my age, from what I know, there’s really no purpose in being rested. We can only play cricket for another one or two years anyway, but if we’re rested then we won’t get to play cricket, so what’s the point?”

Malinga has not played any form of international cricket since the one off T20 against India earlier this year, after which he was mysteriously ‘rested’.

In recent weeks, Malinga has not been his old dangerous self, he has managed just 8 wickets at over eight runs an over in the last 8 innings for the Rangpur Riders in the Bangladesh Premier League. His figures in international cricket haven’t been the greatest either. Since he returned from injury in the beginning of the year, he has 12 wickets to his name in 6 T20 matches, at an economy rate of 8.25. In the ODI format, he has 10 wickets from 13 matches at an economy rate of 6.00.

Since he lost his spot in the Sri Lankan squad, Malinga has been plying his trade in the BPL and has been training domestically with Nondescripts Cricket Club.