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Malinga sure to miss Aussie tie

Malinga will miss Monday's match against Australia as he sustained left ankle ligament damage in training.

cricket Updated: Apr 16, 2007 13:25 IST
AFP
Malinga '90 percent sure' to miss Australia match

Sri Lanka coach Tom Moody has said he is "90 per cent sure" fast bowler Lasith Malinga will miss Monday's Super Eights match against world champions Australia.

Malinga, 23, sustained left ankle ligament damage in training that ruled him out of Thursday's six-wicket win against New Zealand here at the Grenada National Stadium.

Sri Lanka, third in the table, have, like standings leaders Australia and second-placed New Zealand, already qualified for the semi-finals.

Australia and Sri Lanka look set to avoid each other in the last four and will not meet again until possibly the April 28 final in Barbados.

Malinga has never played a one-day international against Australia so there is every incentive for Sri Lanka to keep him 'hidden' from Ricky Ponting's men.

"I can probably say it's 90 per cent sure he won't be available for tomorrow's match. We are aware he's not quite right and we don't want to worsen the situation. We'd rather get on top of it completely before we let him loose again."

"He'll definitely be playing, going forward, but probably tomorrow is a day or two too early," explained Moody, a member of the Australia squads that won the World Cup in 1987 and 1999.

Malinga bowled off a shortened run in the nets at Grenada's La Sagesse ground for approximately 15 minutes on Saturday, generating lively pace, before having his left ankle heavily strapped.

Farveez Maharoof, who deputised for Malinga against New Zealand, is likely to retain his place although Sri Lanka also have fellow quick Nuwan Kulasekara in their squad.