Malinga was not called back to play for Mumbai Indians franchise but he was offered the place of bowling mentor for the team since he represented the franchise in almost all the editions of IPL apart from the inaugural edition.
The Sri Lankan pacer Lasith Malinga was not retained by any time franchise for the current IPL season. So, the Mumbai Indians decided to accommodate this veteran pace bowler as a bowling mentor for the team.
He was very much acquainted with the Wankhede stadium in Mumbai by his long relationship with the Mumbai Indians franchise and backed the team by his elegant pace attack.
Sharing his thought to media, Malinga said “It’s a great opportunity to continue my association with Mumbai Indians,
“Mumbai has been my home away from home for the last decade. As a player, I have enjoyed the journey with Mumbai Indians and now as a mentor, I look forward to the new chapter”.
Malinga stood as the highest wicket-taker in the history of IPL with 154 wickets from 110 matches followed by Amit Mishra. Besides winning the Purple cap in 2011, Malinga, fondly called Slingaa Malinga, played a key role in the title victories of the team thrice.
Due to fitness issues, he could not perform well in the recent past. This 34-year old player made the guest appearance on his home team but the selectors asked him to concentrate more on domestic matches instead of international cricket.
Undoubtedly, Malinga’s entry into the training crew will be a huge gain for the team. Jasprit Bumrah expressed delight about this pointing about the improvements in his bowling action with the suggestions of experienced bowlers.
Co-owner of the Mumbai Indians franchise, Akash Ambani spoke in unison with Bumrah, saying, “Mumbai Indians have a proven record of scouting and bringing forth the young talents at the national stage. It will be a boon for these youngsters as well the established ones to have the combined force of Shane Bond and Lasith Malinga to back them.”
By his entry as a mentor, Malinga enters into the crew of star-players like Mahela Jayawardene(head coach), Robin Singh(batting coach), Shane Bond (Bowling coach), and James Pemment(fielding coach).