With IPL 2020 round the corner, the buzz has been on the fifth gear. The franchises are preparing to leave for the UAE to play the cash-rich league. Meanwhile, the mystery continues to grip around Lasith Malinga’s participation in the tournament.
The veteran fast bowler from Sri Lanka has been key to Mumbai Indians plan in the last decade. He has played significant roles in helping the Rohit Sharma-led side win the title four times. Malinga’s last-over heroics in the IPL 2019 final helped Mumbai win their fourth title against Chennai Super Kings.
Mystery grips around Malinga’s IPL 2020 participation
While players continue to prepare for the mega event, there is no trace of Lasith Malinga. The pacer, who will turn 37 this year, is yet to seek NOC from Sri Lanka Cricket and there is no news of Malinga training in the country.
“He has not yet sought a NOC (no-objection cert) from Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) and we have not heard of him training anywhere,” Deccan Chronicles reported.
“It is not that at this point we doubt his participation in the IPL but surprisingly his private training schedules are not known to anyone in Sri Lanka,” the source tracking the development, added.
So far, Lasith Malinga has played 122 games in the IPL scalping 170 wickets with the best figures of five for 13. He is also one of the modern-day legends in the shortest format of the game with his variations. It will be a massive blow to the Mumbai Indians if he fails to make it for IPL 2020.
On the other hand, another Sri Lanka fast bowler Isuru Udana has grabbed his NOC from Sri Lanka Cricket and will leave for UAE on Friday. He will represent Royal Challengers Bangalore, who will chase their maiden trophy. Skipper Virat Kohli will hope Udana solves their bowling problems which have hurt them badly so far.
Muttiah Muralitharan, who is a part of the Sunrisers Hyderabad support staff, will join the squad in the UAE on September 4.