IPL 2012 April 21, 2012

Malinga injury blow for Mumbai Indians


Back spasms have forced Lasith Malinga, the Mumbai Indians fast bowler, to return to Sri Lanka for treatment, and he could miss up to two weeks of the IPL as a result. Malinga last played for Mumbai Indians against Rajasthan Royals on April 11 and missed the match against Delhi Daredevils on April 16.

"He is undergoing treatment [in Sri Lanka]," Nishantha Ranatunga, the secretary of Sri Lanka Cricket, told ESPNcricinfo. However, Ranatunga was not certain how long Malinga would be out and said the fast bowler would have to be evaluated by the Sri Lanka team's physio. It is understood that Malinga is planning to return by April 25 and targeting full fitness for the match against Delhi Daredevils on April 27.

Malinga has reportedly not been training since the game against Royals and flew back to Sri Lanka on the morning of April 16. The team spokesperson said that Malinga "required rest and it made sense to send him back home", but they were hopeful he would return in a few days.

The loss of Malinga weakens the attack of Mumbai Indians, who have made an inconsistent start to the tournament and currently sit in sixth place in the points table, having won three of their five games. Malinga is the leading wicket-taker in the IPL and has been in good form again this season, taking nine wickets from four games at an economy-rate of 4.54.

Injuries have been a problem for Malinga in recent years. A knee injury he picked up during Sri Lanka's Australia tour in 2007 threatened to cut short his career and in April, 2011, he retired from Tests in order to spare his knee further damage.

Tariq Engineer is a senior sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

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  • Dummy4 on April 24, 2012, 15:55 GMT

    Its a big blow for MI... bcoz always MI batting is bit shaky.. even in champions league it was late order batting which helped them to win it with great bowling from Malinga (als good support was given by Harbajan n Patel)..

    They should have taken in some stable batsman or two at the auction (sachin is the only dependable batsman we had in past but he is bit out of form now..) if we take teams like CSK n RCB they have a strong top order.. so at least in nxt IPL, get in a quality middle order batsman at the auction.... Anyway hope MI can win the IPL...

  • Dummy4 on April 24, 2012, 14:29 GMT

    malinga will also be not playing against Delhi & so Mumbai will eventually lose the coming matches also......

  • Renju on April 24, 2012, 3:08 GMT

    MI has to play Robin Pieterson as 4th foreign player , Johnosn in the place of Perera and drop Ojha.Else McKay must come in the place of RP. This will make MI a winning team w/o Malinga.

  • Dummy4 on April 23, 2012, 5:40 GMT

    sachin is backbone of mumbai batting simmilarly malinga is backbone of bowling. munaf patel and harbajan are good for nothing. harbajan has turned out into disasterous bowler. he should quot captency. no one can take the place of sachin.as a captain. leaving out richard levi was bad decision.

  • sachit on April 23, 2012, 3:26 GMT

    Bye Bye Mumbai... Good while it lasted. BTW once MI realize how much they depended on Malinga, maybe they will name their team the Mumbai Malinga's ?

  • Robin on April 22, 2012, 22:57 GMT

    I really don't think MI can win any match without Malinga, example last 2 matches. Even with Sachin they can't win without Malinga. Malinga and Steyn both are match winners, but sadly steyn is in the wrong team. If Malinga and Steyn are in MI's, then without any problem they will be the champs. I think true cricketers like Sachin, Sangakar, Mahela and Ponting this T20 game will not suitable for them, because they are playing proper cricket strokes on the cricket manual.They should have avoided this T20 without disappointing the fans. PONTING DID THE RIGHT THING.

  • Suss on April 22, 2012, 21:15 GMT

    LOL Mumbai is nothing without Malinga. Munaf Patel and RP Singh are not going to bowl well in the death overs.

  • sathira on April 22, 2012, 12:20 GMT

    R.I.P for MI!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • lankan on April 22, 2012, 9:45 GMT

    @chilled_avenger, malinga did play test but when he got injured playing test, the SLC cancelled his contract for 1 year(he played for country, when injured, SLC should have taken care), so he quit test. Morne Morkel and Mitchell Johnson n there r other good bowlers but malinga is the best. Malinga = pure tallent without anyone's support.

  • babai on April 22, 2012, 9:03 GMT

    Malinga is a great cricketer and good man.. he as an ICON for everybody.. hope u get well soon ..MI's gonna miss him badly ...

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