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Will Lasith Malinga make a sensational Mumbai Indians return for IPL 2024? Massive ‘contract’ update on Shane Bond

Lasith Malinga is currently the bowling coach of Rajasthan Royals, a position he has held since the 2022 edition.

On Saturday, it was reported that Lasith Malinga will be joining Mumbai Indians, marking his comeback to the side for the first time since 2019, when he played his last season in the Indian Premier League. ESPNCricinfo reported that Malinga will make a return to the team as bowling coach; the Sri Lankan pacer had served at the same role in Rajasthan Royals since retiring from international cricket.

However, news agency PTI has now reported that Mumbai Indians are yet to take a definitive call over the tenure of Shane Bond, the current bowling coach of the side. Bond had joined the MI in 2015 as bowling coach and naturally worked with Malinga during the latter’s playing years with the franchise as well.

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“MI’s contract with (Shane) Bond is still not over as yet,” the source told the news agency.

Earlier, according to the ESPNCricinfo report, uncertainty loomed over Shane Bond’s continuation as the head coach of MI Emirates in the ILT20 as well, where the team secured a third-place finish in the inaugural edition this year

Lasith Malinga, renowned for his illustrious tenure with the Mumbai Indians, clinched a remarkable five titles, encompassing four IPL crowns (2013, 2015, 2017, 2019) and the 2011 Champions League T20 triumph.

Malinga’s association with Mumbai Indians spanned 139 matches, during which he scalped an impressive tally of 195 wickets at an economy rate of 7.12. Significantly, 170 of these wickets were garnered in the IPL, firmly positioning him among the league’s top wicket-takers at a joint-sixth position.

This marks Malinga’s second stint within Mumbai’s support staff, after his previous role as a mentor in 2018. Following his retirement in 2021, Malinga took up the mantle of the fast bowling coach for the Rajasthan Royals in 2022. The franchise had witnessed a commendable season last year, reaching the final under the leadership of Sanju Samson. However, this year’s campaign saw the team narrowly miss out on a playoff spot, concluding the season in the 5th position.

Should Malinga indeed reunite with MI ahead of the 2024 season, he would find himself collaborating with two of the best pacers in international cricket: Jasprit Bumrah and Jofra Archer.

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