Sri Lanka cricket authorities on Sunday warned injured fast bowler Lasith Malinga against playing in the lucrative Indian Premier League without clearance from them.
Malinga, suffering a knee injury that forced him out of the World Twenty20, is in India where he has signed with the Mumbai Indians, although the veteran did not play in the franchise’s first two outings.
Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) said Malinga needed its clearance to play in any IPL matches and must return to Colombo for a fitness assessment on Wednesday before any IPL appearances.
“We have no problem with Malinga travelling to Mumbai to be with his IPL team,” the spokeswoman for SLC president Thilanga Sumathipala told AFP. “But in order to play, he must get a NOC (no objection certificate) from SLC.”
“Malinga has not informed Sri Lanka Cricket of his travel to India nor his intention to play in the IPL,” she said.
After Wednesday’s fitness assessment, “the board will decide what course of action should be taken”.
Malinga was dropped as Sri Lanka captain on the eve of the World T20 in India in March and April because of his injury and after presiding over Sri Lanka’s dismal showing in the Asia Cup.
The paceman has a long history of injury problems and gave up Test cricket in 2010, saying he was unable to withstand the rigour of five-day matches.
But Malinga is the IPL’s all-time highest wicket taker. And the 32-year-old is considered an invaluable member of the Sri Lankan team, with teammate Thisara Perera describing him during the World T20 as irreplaceable.