Sri Lanka fast bowler Lasith Malinga has retired from franchise cricket, his Indian Premier League side Mumbai Indians announced on Wednesday. Malinga, who is known for his dangerous yorkers, informed Mumbai Indians of his decision earlier this month, the IPL franchise said in a statement. Malinga said that he had made up his mind after discussion with his family. “After discussing with family, I think now is the right time to retire from all franchise cricket. The Pandemic situation and the restrictions on travel will make it difficult for me given my personal circumstances to participate fully in franchise cricket for the next year and therefore it is best to make this decision now,” Malinga is quoted as saying in the statement.
“I have discussed the same with Mumbai Indians management in recent days as they prepare for the upcoming auction and they have been very supportive and understanding. I would like to take this opportunity to thank the Ambani family, everyone at the Mumbai Indians franchise and all our fans for the wonderful 12 years,” he said.
Mumbai Indians owner Akash Ambani paid tribute to the paceman, who has made 122 appearances for the defending IPL champions.
“Lasith Malinga has been at the core of Mumbai Indians for 12 years. We respect his decision, even though I would have liked to him to be part of our bowling attack for another 5 years,” Akash Ambani said.
“Malinga is an MI legend. His contributions to Mumbai Indians’ journey are invaluable. We will miss the Wankhede chant for him, but he will always be in the heart of all MI fans. At Mumbai Indians, Malinga will always be a part of the MI family and we hope we can continue to lean on his experience in a non-playing capacity in the future.”
Malinga has won four IPL titles with MI. He did not take part in IPL 2020 due to personal reasons.
He thanked Mumbai Indians for treating him like family.
“Mumbai Indians has treated me like family, supporting me 100 % in every situation both on and off the field, and always giving me the confidence and the freedom to play my natural game whenever I walked onto the field,” Maling said
“I have collected so many happy memories that I cherish and I am very grateful to have played for so long for the best franchise in world cricket. I would like to wish Mrs Nita Ambani, coach Mahela (Jayawardene), Akash (Ambani) and the MI family all the best for the upcoming season,” he addded.
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