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Nortjé’s loss is Morris’s gain in SA World Cup squad

07 May 2019 - 13:54 By Telford Vice
Anrich Nortje. File photo
Anrich Nortje. File photo
Image: Richard Huggard/Gallo Images

Anrich Nortjé’s World Cup ended before it began on Tuesday when he was ruled out with a broken thumb.

His loss is Chris Morris’s gain — the all but forgotten allrounder has been recalled for the tournament in England‚ which starts at the end of the month.

Fast bowler Nortjé was the closest thing to a surprise when the World Cup squad was named on April 18.

He earned his place by bowling with pace and passion to take eight wickets at an average of 18‚75 and an economy rate of 4.76 in four one-day internationals in his debut series against Sri Lanka in March.

A shoulder injury took him out of the equation for the Indian Premier League (IPL)‚ but that was almost welcomed because it meant he would be fresh for the World Cup.

And he was. Until a day ago‚ that is …

“Anrich sustained a fracture to his right thumb during a net session in Port Elizabeth on Monday‚” South Africa team manager and doctor Mohammed Moosajee was quoted as saying in a Cricket South Africa release on Tuesday.

“He immediately consulted a hand surgeon and underwent surgery to stabilise the joint and will unfortunately be sidelined for up to eight weeks. This makes him unavailable for the upcoming World Cup.

“It is an unfortunate and freakish injury‚ especially because he had made a successful recovery from the shoulder injury he sustained during the series against Sri Lanka.”

Morris last played a one-day international in February last year and has missed South Africa’s last 21 games in the format.

But he has had a successful IPL‚ where he is 13th in the wicket-taking charts with 13 scalps at an average of 23.53.

“Chris has always been in our plans and is our next best option with the ball‚” the release quoted selection convenor Linda Zondi as saying.

“He has the pace and death-bowling skills which will be vital in the UK‚ and also gives us that depth as a deadly finisher with the bat.”


Source: TMG Digital.