Mumbai: Veteran pacer Lasith Malinga on Wednesday, has formally withdrawn from the Indian Premier League (IPL) citing ‘personal reasons’. Mumbai Indians (MI) has signed Australian pacer James Pattinson as his replacement.
The development was confirmed by Akash Ambani, owner of the Mumbai Indians franchise on Wednesday. “James is the right fit for us and adds to our pace attack options available at hand especially for the conditions we will play in this season,” MI owner Akash Ambani was quoted as saying by Cricbuzz.
“The franchise also tweeted about replacing Malinga with James Pattinson. Lasith Malinga will miss this season’s #Dream11IPL with Australian speedster James Pattinson replacing him.” It read.
Lasith Malinga will miss this season’s #Dream11IPL with Australian speedster James Pattinson replacing him.
According to reports, Malinga’s father has been ill for a long time and he may have to undergo surgery in a few weeks. Malinga wanted to be with his father at his home in Sri Lanka. Earlier, he also denied travelling with the MI squad to Abu Dhabi last month.
Akash Ambani also supported Malinga’s decision to be present with his family in such a situation. He stated, “Lasith is a legend and a pillar of MI’s strength. There is no denying the fact that we will miss Lasith’s cricketing acumen this season. However, we fully understand Lasith’s need to be in Sri Lanka with his family during this time.”
Mumbai Indians currently have Jasprit Bumrah and Trent Boult of New Zealand for a strong pace attack in the team, but Malinga’s experience could be felt as well. He is also the second-highest wicket-taker in the T-20 cricket, next to Dwayne Bravo.
Pattison has never played an IPL game yet while, Malinga has returned 170 wickets in 122 matches with an average of 19.80 and an economy rate of 7.14.
The 13th edition of IPL tournament will be starting from September 19 while, the schedule for the matches is yet to be announced.