Malinga ‘not happy’ with match-winning effort


Sri Lanka paceman Lasith Malinga took four wickets in his side's narrow win over the UAE in the Asia Cup on Thursday, but was unhappy with his efforts and felt he was not as prepared as he'd have liked.

Malinga has been out of action since November with a knee injury, but despite this lack of action in the middle, he still recorded 4/26 in a match-winning effort that saw his side win by just 14 runs. Sri Lanka defended 129 runs.

Malinga, who also hinted that he might retire after the World Twenty20 next month, said:  "I am not happy.

"I haven't bowled a single ball in the last three months. I just bowled in the nets in the last two days. I am happy with the result but I think I have to do more for the team. I will try my best in the next game.

"[This performance] is not my 100 percent, maybe 60-70 percent, but still I managed to bowl yorkers and slower balls. Team expects more than that from me.

"I had a very bad injury in the knee. Same thing happened in 2008. I needed two years rest to recover. I had same injury in the other leg. This is not the right time to rest since we have the World T20.

"I am the experienced bowler in the T20 format. I have to use painkillers and injections, whatever I have to do [to play]. This is the end of my career so I want to do something for the team.

"I want to give my best in the last few years or maybe few months."

Malinga then said that he was pleased to see senior bowlers taking responsibility when defending their small target, and said they were unsure about what a par score was on the tracks in Bangladesh.

He added: "We were not prepared for this wicket in Bangladesh. This is a really good wicket. We didn't know a target batting first. I am always saying we have to set a target. We got 129 so this is the best score for our team.

"We had to minimise those boundaries to defend that total. Their bowlers did really well, there was movement off the wicket and bit of grass. We managed to do well because we have experienced bowlers like myself, Rangana [Herath] and [Nuwan] Kulasekara."