The unorthodox right-arm pacer played the last match of his ODI career against Bangladesh on Friday.

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The R. Premadasa Stadium in Colombo is now forever etched in the history books. It now holds the privilege of bidding farewell to a Sri Lankan legend and one of the most feared bowlers in the world, Lasith Malinga.

The final chapter has been written for the right arm pacer in some style. The first ODI between Sri Lanka and Bangladesh saw the 35-year-old deliver one of his iconic Yorkers to dismiss Tamim Iqbal and then, piling on the misery with his pinpoint accuracy.

His spell of three for 38 has proved that if he still wishes to continue, he can wreak havoc in any condition. In the recently concluded ICC Cricket World Cup in England, he finished as the highest wicket-taker for his team with 13 scalps from seven innings.

Known for his destruction at the death overs, Malinga’s Yorkers have long been the plight of esteemed batsmen across the cricketing world. He is the only bowler to have taken four wickets in four balls in ODIs, achieving this historic feat in a World Cup encounter against South Africa back in 2007.

The record bookkeeper will have a tough time keeping track of all the milestones that Malinga has crossed during his glittering career. His feat in the final match of his career has made him the ninth-highest wicket-taker in ODIs and the bowler to have bowled most Yorkers (1018) in ODI since 2006.

Coming from a nation that has produced bowling legends like Muttiah Muralitharan and Chaminda Vaas, Malinga too, feels that the state of cricketing affairs in the country can only be improved by investing in young and upcoming players.

“I feel it's the right time for me to retire from ODIs. I have been playing for the last 15 years for Sri Lanka and this is the right time to move on. My time is over and I have to go. Winning is very important for me; We are a young team," Malinga said in the post-match presentation.

Read: Malinga 'happy' to make way for younger Sri Lankans 

Malinga is a prime example of someone who discovered his innate abilities to master his art and entertained an entire generation of cricket fanatics and inspiring the future ones.

Here’s how Twitter bid goodbye to their most cherished and beloved bowler.

 

 

A legend in the true sense of the game. See you soon on the T20I stage, 'Maali'. 

Feature image courtesy: AFP/Ishara S. Kodikara