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One of the greatest Sri Lankans to ever play the game, Lasith Malinga was a true entertainer in limited-overs cricket.

A clinical right-arm fast bowler, Malinga enjoyed a sensational international career spanning 16 years and was regularly deployed as a death bowler for his country.

Dubbed 'Slinga Malinga', he was renowned for his unusual round-arm bowling style, which saw him rack up nearly 400 wickets in the sport's shortest format.

Featuring in both the Big Bash and Indian Premier League, Malinga also successfully tried his hand at franchise cricket, although it was for his country that he often shone brightest.

A T20 World Cup-winning captain in 2014, Malinga will go down as one of the greatest players ever to feature in the format and here is a look at some of his biggest achievements.

T20 World Cup

Lasith Malinga in Profile


Sri Lanka

Years active


Playing role

Right-arm fast bowler

Career T20 wickets

390 wickets in 295 matches

*Stats refer to all T20 matches, correct as of 1st May 2024.

Lasith Malinga honours

Among Malinga's most prestigious honours at international level was the 2014 T20 World Cup, which Sri Lanka won in Bangladesh following a six-wicket triumph over India in the final.

Malinga also played a key part in Sri Lanka's run to the final of the 2007 ODI World Cup in the West Indies, claiming 18 wickets at that tournament. 

He was also included in the Sri Lankan teams that reached the finals of the competition in both 2009 and 2012.

In 2014, meanwhile, Malinga finished as the leading wicket-taker in his side's Asia Cup triumph.

The iconic bowler was also successful in franchise cricket, winning four Indian Premier League titles with Mumbai Indians between 2013 and 2019.

Lasith Malinga greatest matches

When thinking of Malinga's greatest matches, the first that springs to mind is his nation's 2007 T20 World Cup clash with South Africa.

South Africa required only four runs to win from 32 balls but Malinga threw a spanner in the works when he became the first - and to date only - bowler to take four wickets in four consecutive deliveries.

Five years later at the T20 World Cup, Sri Lanka concluded their group stage unbeaten, thanks largely to some fine performances from the seamer, not least his showing against England.

Malinga rattled through three wickets in one over on his way to figures of 5-31 and his side went on to finish as runners-up at the tournament.

As for franchise cricket, it was in the Australian Big Bash back in 2012 that Malinga impressed the most.

In a devastating spell which featured a deadly slower ball yorker, Malinga claimed six wickets for only seven runs for Melbourne Stars against Perth Scorchers - his best-ever figures.

The match finished with a downpour but it goes down as one of the best individual performances in the competition's history.

And, in 2019, Malinga showed he still had it with remarkable figures of 5-6 in a T20 clash with New Zealand.

Lasith Malinga career statistics

Malinga took 390 wickets in 295 matches in T20s with an average economy rate of 7.07.

His best career figures, meanwhile, came in the Big Bash as he finished on 6-7 to help Melbourne Stars overpower Perth Scorchers.

The Sri Lankan ace was also the first player to reach 100 wickets in T20 internationals, hitting that landmark after only 76 matches in September 2019.

With the bat, Malinga failed to make much of an impact, although he did contribute 426 runs in 295 matches in T20 internationals.

And, it is not only in T20 cricket in which he, starred with the seamer the only bowler to take three hat-tricks in ODIs.

Quotes on Lasith Malinga

Lasith Malinga is the best thing that happened to Sri Lankan cricket after Aravinda de Silva.

Sir Viv Richards

I don't think any other bowler in the world, I have seen at the international level, who comes even 50 per cent close to that. A truly world-class bowler.

Sachin Tendulkar

The toughest bowler I've faced to date is Lastih Malinga.

Chris Gayle

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