With reports suggesting Morne Morkel considering a Kolpak deal is gaining some steam, former South Africa pace bowler Allan Donald has publicly urged the fast-bowler to not follow the path which has haunted the Proteas in recent times.
The last one year or so has witnessed several South Africa internationals accepting the lucrative Kolpak deal which has substantially weakened South Africa’s bench strength.
Some key members of the team like Stiaan van Zyl, Hardus Viljoen, Daryn Smit, Rilee Rossouw, Kyle Abbott, David Wiese, Simon Harmer and Dane Vilas have already ended their South Africa career to ply their trade for the English counties.
The effect of a weak bench strength is clearly visible, as South Africa are finding it tough to replace the players and the results are a testimony of that. The Proteas exited the Champions Trophy at the group stage and lost the series across all three formats in England.
“Don’t reconsider your future. South Africa needs you. Your performances against England in the Test series were the best I have seen you bowl in a very, very long time,” Donald was quoted as saying by Titans’ official website.
At a time when the senior pacer Dale Steyn is on the sidelines due to a long injury layoff and AB de Villiers’ Test career in limbo, losing yet another senior member of the team will be severe as a blow for the Proteas. Morkel was in brilliant form against England and was elected as South Africa’s Man of the Series. The right-arm pacer picked up 19 wickets and was South Africa’s leading wicket-taker in the four-match series.
“Give him what he wants. Let him retire on his terms. We need him this summer. I have not seen him bowl this well for many, many seasons. There’s no doubt, Morkel is world-class. It is just a shame that he did not take bucket loads of wickets in England because he deserved it. He beat the bat on countless occasions without reward,” Donald added.
Recently, Morkel, who will turn 33 this October, had admitted that he was nearing the end of his career.
“After this tour, we’ll see. I’ll sit and speak with Cricket South Africa and see where they see me featuring,” he had said.
“But I love playing for this team. It’s not rocket science that they probably want to start looking, in white-ball cricket, at the 2019 World Cup. Am I going to part of those plans? If I can be around to help the younger guys find their feet, so be it. I’ll do that. For me, the main focus is this tour and then we’ll go back and see how we go,” he had added.