Bleached-blond Malinga having slinging time

PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad, March 23, 2007 (AFP) – There’s more to Sri Lankan paceman Lasith Malinga than his low-slung round-arm action and bleached-blond hairstyle.

What matters for his team is that he’s taking wickets and winning matches for them.
The fast bowler with the deceptive action, unkempt hair and silver eyebrow ring played a big role in his team’s wins over Bangladesh and debutants Bermuda in the World Cup group matches here, grabbing three early wickets in each game.

Sri Lankan coach Tom Moody says Malinga has been performing extremely well in recent months, but doesn’t think it’s the new hairstyle that has brought him luck.

“He has had many hairstyles over the past 12 months and you never know what it will be tomorrow,” Moody said ahead of his side’s World Cup group match against India.

Malinga’s action has already become a big headache for batsmen, especially on Sri Lanka’s tour of New Zealand in 2005.

New Zealand captain Stephen Fleming admitted most of his batsmen found it difficult to sight the ball, which was coming virtually in front of the umpires and missing the sightscreen.

“We can’t see him when it’s a bit