South Africa speedster Chris Morris' World Cup hopes all but over

South Africa speedster Chris Morris’ World Cup hopes all but over

Morris' last One Day International came way back in February 2018 against India.

Chris Morris of South Africa
Chris Morris of South Africa. (Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Images)

Chris Morris’ fall from grace has been remarkable. Not very long ago, the South African was one of the most sought after all-rounders in the world. His abilities to bowl fast and hit the ball a long way made him a player that every captain would have loved to have in the playing eleven. The all-rounder, who had bagged a million-dollar contract in the 2016 IPL auction, was tipped to end South Africa’s long wait for a quality all-rounder since the retirement of the legendary Jacques Kallis.

However, injuries and poor form have pretty much derailed Morris’ career and on Monday he suffered a big setback when South Africa did not name him in the squad for the last two ODIs against Sri Lanka. The ongoing five-match series is South Africa’s last series before the World Cup and the snub means Morris’ World Cup hopes are as good as over. Morris’s last ODI appearance came over a year ago in February 2018 against India at Centurion and since then he has been toiling in domestic cricket but without much success.

Morris’ stats in the 50-over format has not helped his cause either. In 34 ODIs so far, he has scored just 393 runs at an average of 19.65 in addition to picking up 35 wickets. With Morris failing to make the chances count, the Proteas finally seem to have moved on and have currently pinned their hopes in the likes of Andile Phehlukwayo, Dwaine Pretorius and Wiaan Mulder.

Cricket South Africa’s  Linda Zondi has now given a scathing assessment of how the team sees Morris as far as ODIs are concerned. “We don’t view Morris as a No 7 batsman,” Zondi told Sport24 before adding: “It’s really difficult and we can’t take everyone.”

“Dwaine has gone back to franchise level and has put in the performances, so he needs to be given another run. Andile is a bowling all-rounder, but we believe he has the potential to be a No 7. He has come good with the bat at franchise level lately. He hasn’t been quite consistent enough, but he has worked hard on his game and looks to have turned a corner,” added Zondi.

Morris superb in T20s:

While Morris might have fallen out of favour in ODIs, he still has a chance to don the national jersey but in the shortest format of the game. Zondi called Morris a superb T20 player before reiterating that he does not see the all-rounder playing in the ODIs right now.

“He is a superb T20 cricketer,” Zondi said. “But in the ODI side right now it is all about finding the right balance. We could take any player and scrutinise, but we have to make these decisions.”

He also dismissed rumours suggesting that Morris is out of favour because of personal issues with the Proteas leadership. “Not at all,” he said. “If there were any personality clashes or any issues with the way he trains, then the coaches would have to let us know and nothing like that has come my way,” added Zondi.

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