Jayawardene backs bowler's skills November 1, 2007

Malinga aims to bowl faster

Cricinfo staff

Lasith Malinga: "I think maybe I can get around 140kph now" © Cricinfo Ltd

Lasith Malinga, the Sri Lankan fast bowler, has said he would like to bowl faster than he did on his last tour to Australia. "I have more pace now than last time we played here. I think maybe I can get around 140kph now," Malinga told AFP. "I want more pace.

"All fast bowlers like to do the bouncer and everything. I am the same. We are going to be very attacking."

Mahela Jayawardene, the Sri Lanka captain, said Malinga had improved in the three years since Sri Lanka's previous tour of Australia. Malinga made his Test debut in that tour and took 10 wickets at 26.40 in the two Tests.

"He [Malinga] has learned to adjust to different conditions and batsmen," Jayawardene said. "Now he's got the ability to control his aggression, which is a good thing. He is one of our attacking options [but] we don't want to put a lot of pressure on the young guys."

Asked about the recent rise in on-field verbal attacks, Jayawardene said it was important not to lose one's cool. "You need to be aggressive but you should not go overboard. When you lose your composure, that's when they [Australia] come back at you very strongly. It's the seniors' responsibility to guide the guys through periods in difficult situations."