Our ancestors bowled over maidens for the Sri Lankan cricket team

South Africa is so rich these days that we are now exporting our gene pool.

South Africa is so rich these days that we are now exporting our gene pool.

We were discussing the cricket World Cup and trying to sound knowledgeable about the decisions made by the umpires.

Everyone laughed when I told the taxi crew that I taught myself how to read cricket on TV. Whenever I heard the LBW decision I would turn to my mother and say: "They got him through his elbow."

I used to know nothing about "leg before wicket" and even now I sometimes think "elbow" before correcting myself.

The members all agreed that cricket was a lovely game even if it was excrutiatingly slow and there was a lot of time wasting while umpires checked this or that.

We also agreed that it was a typically English game because the men are covered from head to toe. There is no tantalising glimpse of a shapely calve or bun. The team's outfits are a relic of the prudish Victorian era.

It was a lazy discussion which did not require any brain power until we were shocked to learn that we South Africans have a cousin in the Sri Lankan team.

His name is Malinga Bandara. He is a bowler and is 27 years old. He looks like any guy from Eldorado Park or Bosmont. Apparently the Sri Lankans, like the Chinese, use their surnames ahead of their first names.

Aunty Emma, who knows these things, says that Malinga might be the offspring of a footloose, young man from Umlazi in KwaZulu-Natal.

She said she suspects that the Umlazi Malinga might have been hit by wanderlust and hopped on to a boat bound for China.

Perhaps he left his gene imprint in Sri Lanka during a stopover there.

Aunty said the boy will not be lucky though the Sri Lankans once won the cricket World Cup. His errant ancestor forgot or did not stay long enough in that country to do right by the boy.

We have resolved to adopt the young Malinga until the end of the tourney. We will be in his corner and cheer him on together with his teammates.

We hope he will not disappoint us because of his father's careless attitude. He must not hold it against us that the rituals were not observed at his birth.

We have decided to write to him and tell him that he is our kin. He can come to South Africa after they win to meet all his relatives.

With his financial help, we will happily do the right thing for him and introduce him to the house of Gumakhulu so that his ancestors are with him all his life.

The members will try and compile a history of the Malingas, especially any who live in Umlazi, along with a clan name and praise song.

We will then invite a few of his Joburg relatives for a party to welcome him home.

Malinga, Gumakhulu, Zindela - we are waiting for you and your millions.