COLOMBO, SRI LANKA: Sri Lanka on Thursday recalled veteran fast bowler Lasith Malinga to the squad for a series of T20Is in Australia this month after his recovery from a long-running knee problem.
The 33-year-old, who retired from Test cricket in 2010, has not played international cricket since last February when Sri Lanka suffered an early exit from the Asia Cup after being plagued by injury worries.
Malinga gave up Test cricket after deciding he was unable to withstand the rigour of five-day matches but has continued to make himself available for T20Is and 50 over cricket.
Thilanga Sumathipala, president of the Sri Lankan cricket board, told reporters that Malinga had proved his fitness and even pencilled the former skipper in for the next 50 over World Cup being played in England in 2019.
"We are happy to see Malinga, he is fit to play. He will be available for the T20 squad [in Australia]," Sumathipala said in Colombo. "It is almost a year ago that we lost him [Malinga] from international cricket... we want to prepare him for 2019 [World Cup]."
Skipper Angelo Mathews was on Monday ruled out of the Australian tour because of a hamstring injury and the full squad is yet to be announced.
Sri Lanka will face Australia on February 17 in Melbourne, in Geelong on February 19 and in Adelaide on February 22.