Lasith Malinga is expected to play at least two early games in the IPL after the BCCI asked Sri Lanka Cricket to make the fast bowler available for Mumbai Indians as much as possible.
Malinga is likely to be available for selection for Mumbai's next two matches, both away games - on March 28 against Royal Challengers Bangalore and on March 30 against Kings XI Punjab. He will then return to Sri Lanka to feature in the Super Provincial One-Day Tournament before rejoining Mumbai after April 10, ESPNcricinfo reported.
The 35-year-old recently opted to skip the first six matches of the IPL to fulfil the condition set by Sri Lanka Cricket to play in the week-long domestic 50-overs competition in order to qualify for the World Cup.
A call from the BCCI prompted Sri Lanka Cricket, who depend on India tours for broadcast income and are also hopeful for BCCI support for the upcoming Lankan Premier League.
Sri Lanka chief selector Ashantha de Mel said that Malinga's World Cup spot is under no threat.
"We have no issues if he goes to IPL - the board had given him a no-objection certificate already, so he's free to go. Anyway, he's been one of our best bowlers in one-dayers, so there's no question about his place in the team," Mel said.
However, Sri Lanka Cricket CEO Ashley de Silva earlier stated that participation in the domestic was likely to be essential for World Cup selection.
Mumbai Indians lost their opening campaign to Delhi Capitals by 37 runs on Sunday. The Rohit Sharma-led side will take on Royal Challengers Bangalore on March 28 in Bangaluru. (ANI)