Lasith Malinga ‘Ready’ to Step Down As Sri Lanka T20I Captain
Lasith Malinga (© AFP )

Sri Lanka’s sorry show in the three-match T20I series against India has left captain Lasith Malinga disappointed so much so that he’s mentally prepared to step down from the role. After the series opening first T20I was washed out in Guwahati, Sri Lanka suffered heavy defeats in Indore (by seven wickets) and Pune (by 78 runs) to lose 0-2.

Malinga, who went wicketless across the two matches, accepted his own failings while adding that the lack of experienced players who knew their jobs was hurting the team too. “We don’t have that,” Malinga said. “I am ready any time. I am ready to quit.”

Malinga was the captain when Sri Lanka won their maiden ICC World T20 title in 2014 and continued into the role till 2016 before being handed back the job in late 2018.

There are reports in the Sri Lankan media of an apparent rift in the team under Malinga’s captaincy which, if true, could make the veteran bowler’s job even tougher in the world cup year.

After Pune defeat, Malinga had said he has to guide the inexperienced players and advised them to remain calm in difficult situations. “Captaincy means, when we have experienced players who can handle situations, it is very easy to do the job. But now I don’t have that luxury. When I was captain in 2014, I had Mahela, Sanga, Angelo (Mathews), Dilshan, we had lots of experienced players who were match-winners, they knew what they needed to do. Now, players are not experienced and I have to guide them and I have to wait and see,” he said.

“Previously, we had Sanga, Mahela and Dilshan they knew how to build an innings. The young players are talented, they want to play their shots, but sometimes they have to be calm and handle the situation. That part is lacking,” the 36-year-old added..

He added, “Going forward, I am looking forward to get my job done. I can’t give excuse to others (on non performance) as I have wicket taking variations, skills. I have experience of playing franchise cricket but, at the end of the day, in this tournament, I did not do anything for the team.”