After the match, he insisted it was the right time for him to retire as Sri Lanka begin rebuilding for the next World Cup. The pacer bowler, who will turn 36 next month, urged the younger generation to step up.
"My captains expect me to take wickets," Malinga said at the post-match presentation. "I tried my best all through my career. I hope all the young bowlers do this as well. Because just surviving in cricket, I don't think anyone can go far. You have to be a match-winner.
"That's what I'm looking forward to in the future. These young bowlers have to get match-winning performances and people have to say, 'That's a match-winning bowler!' We have a couple of guys, they have the ability and we have to look after them."
He is the only bowler to have taken three ODI hat-tricks. He achieved his highest ranking of seventh in November 2011, achieved against Pakistan in Dubai.
Malinga chose to bow out in front of the home crowd, and they turned out in huge numbers to send him off.
"I've played the last 15 years for Sri Lanka. Really an honour to play, and really happy to play for these people and for all crowd that's been behind me," he said. "I feel this is the time I have to move on because we have to build for the 2023 World Cup and that's why I realised, 'OK, my time is up, I have to go'."
Business Standard has always strived hard to provide up-to-date information and commentary on developments that are of interest to you and have wider political and economic implications for the country and the world. Your encouragement and constant feedback on how to improve our offering have only made our resolve and commitment to these ideals stronger. Even during these difficult times arising out of Covid-19, we continue to remain committed to keeping you informed and updated with credible news, authoritative views and incisive commentary on topical issues of relevance.
We, however, have a request.
As we battle the economic impact of the pandemic, we need your support even more, so that we can continue to offer you more quality content. Our subscription model has seen an encouraging response from many of you, who have subscribed to our online content. More subscription to our online content can only help us achieve the goals of offering you even better and more relevant content. We believe in free, fair and credible journalism. Your support through more subscriptions can help us practise the journalism to which we are committed.
Support quality journalism and subscribe to Business Standard.