Lanka lose Malinga for New Zealand ODIs

Wellington, December 25

Leading Sri Lanka bowler Lasith Malinga will miss the first two one-day internationals against New Zealand and may not be available for the entire series, team officials said on Friday.

Malinga is still recovering from a knee injury sustained during the West Indies tour of Sri Lanka in October and November. “He has not come for the ODIs,” team manager Jerry Woutersz said. “He’s feeling some discomfort in his knee. Whether he will come between the ODIs and T20s — no-one knows.”

Thisara Perera has joined the squad in Malinga’s place ahead of the first ODI in Christchurch on Saturday.

New Zealand also have injury concerns with Kane Williamson, the newly crowned No 1 Test batsman in the world, suffering discomfort in his right knee.

Test opener Tom Latham has been put on standby. “We’re just working through that knee. It’s just a little bit niggly so we want to make sure it’s 100 per cent,” New Zealand batting coach Craig McMillan said.