Morkel regrets missing CWC

2011-06-02 07:42
Albie Morkel (AFP)
Christo Buchner

Johannesburg – It’s one of the big disappointments of his life that he did not make the Cricket World Cup side, but Albie Morkel believes he’s a much stronger person as a result of the experience.

“I just decided that I won’t sulk about it. It gave me the opportunity to get rid of the negative things in my life and I have grown as player and person,” he said this week at the launch of the iTrainer-concept, according to which sportsmen can be trained by a computer.

Morkel and other important sports people such as Victor Matfield, Pedrie Wannenburg, Roland Schoeman, Nico van Rensburg and John-Laffnie de Jager are all directors of iTrainer.

Morkel, who helped the Chennai Super Kings retain their IPL title, views the team’s new coach, former Kiwi coach Stephen Fleming, as the best one under whom he has played.

The view still exists in certain circles that South Africa could have had a better tournament if they picked Morkel for the World Cup. His ability to play big shots towards the end of an innings could have been invaluable.

“I have to point the finger solely at myself for not making that team,” he admitted this week.

“I was desperate to be picked and knew it would be my last chance to make a World Cup tournament, so I ended up putting way too much pressure on myself.

“That influenced my play negatively and I did not play with my usual freedom. Only when the team was announced and I wasn’t in it, I started relaxing again and played the way I could,” said Morkel.

“I was shattered, but also came to the realisation that I can’t allow it to get me down.

“I’d also like to win back my place in the national team. I also don’t want to just be remembered as a one-day specialist. It’s my goal to play test cricket again.

“I believe I’m good enough to do that. The statistics must not show one day that I was a one-dimensional player.”

He is full of praise for Fleming’s influence on him and the Chennai team.

“He is incredible and knows exactly how to work with his players and how to handle them. He’s tactically smart and has a sharp cricket brain. He also realised how much pressure there is on the players and eases it with the manner in which he works with you.”

He said that the tournament was not as glamorous as when Lalit Modi was still the big boss, but “it was not necessarily a bad thing because there was almost $6-million (about R40-million) spent on fireworks”.

Morkel puts the Kings’ success down to the fact that they lost only two players in the new set-up.

“It made a big difference that the core of the side was retained.”

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