Lasith Malinga, a veteran of three World Cups, will be taking part in his fourth after being included in the Sri Lanka squad. While most teams have closed ranks with the World Cup 2019 round the corner, Lasith Malinga continues to play the role of a mentor to perfection, even if it means sharing a few trade secrets with members of the opposition. The 36-year-old Sri Lankan legend was seen imparting some knowledge to Australian all-rounder Marcus Stoinis following the two teams' warm-up match at the Rose Bowl in Southampton on Monday.
In a video posted by the Cricket World Cup official Twitter handle, Malinga can be seen and heard teaching how to bowl a slower ball to Marcus Stoinis.
In a separate video posted by cricket.com.au, Malinga was asked during a press-conference about his session with Stoinis.
Malinga was watching a video of him teaching Stoinis and couldn't hold back his laughter as the questions came thick and fast.
"Stoinis asked me something about bowling a slower ball, I just talk with him and then I got the video as soon as the Sri Lankan people sent (it) to me," said a smiling Malinga.
Probed more about what he was teaching Stoinis, Malinga said: "The thing is, variation is very important in the shorter format. I spoke to him during the IPL also, he wanted to learn the slower ball and how I bowl it. I expect him (Stoinis) to bowl the dipping slower ball."
Here is a clip of the hilarious press-conference:
Fans on Twitter showered praise on Malinga for sharing tips with an opposition player.
Lasith Malinga is truly a LEGEND Was appointed as bowling coach for "Mumbai Indians" in 2018. Made it back to their playing eleven in 2019 as their main strike bowler only to kick ass and lift IPL— (@SerenityJaded) May 27, 2019
Oh please give Stoinis more lessons, what a legend Lasith is. Love the world cup. Lasith malinga a genuine champion of the gane— Arvind Hickman (@ArvindHickman) May 27, 2019
One of the most Lost loved Cricketer in the world & specially in India— Happy (@Cricketician_) May 27, 2019
Breaking geographical barriers and uniting people !! The name is Cricket— Ramnath Shankar (@ramnathtweets) May 27, 2019
See guys. This is how Spirit of cricket works. Friendships formed. Malinga is truly a legend on and off the field.— Jay Deshpande (@JayDeshpande8) May 27, 2019
Wonderful! No wonder @mipaltan took him on as a mentor in IPL 2018.— Victor Tarapore (@VictorTarapore) May 27, 2019
This is what the great game should be about!— Brad Hancock (@BDHancock) May 28, 2019
What a gem Feels great to see these things.. thanks for sharing!— mandy andrews (@Miss_mandyy_) May 27, 2019
Sri Lanka were overpowered by Australia by five wickets in the World Cup warm-up match on Monday.
Usman Khawaja, who appears to be vying for a place at number three with Shaun Marsh, made 89 in a total of 241 for five.
The world champions rested opener David Warner (leg soreness) while former Australia skipper Steve Smith, also returning to the international scene following a year-long ban for his part in a ball-tampering scandal, batted in the nets.
Australia, who begin the defence of their title against outsiders Afghanistan in Bristol on Saturday, saw fast bowlers Mitchell Starc and Pat Cummins get in the groove as they restricted Sri Lanka to a meagre 239 for eight.
For Sri Lanka, only Lahiru Thirimanne went past fifty.