Cape Town - Proteas allrounder Chris Morris's reputation as one of the most valued T20 players in world cricket was strengthened on Sunday when he was the first player picked at the Global League draft.
Morris will play for the Durban Qalanders when the tournament gets underway in early November, and not many were shocked that he was the first-choice.
Since securing his $1 million IPL contract with the Delhi Daredevils in February of last year, Morris's star has been rising in T20 cricket with his big hitting and fast bowling making him an attractive option.
Morris pocketed R1.755 million on Sunday, but he insists that the financial gain is not his priority.
"Very humbling," Morris said of being the first pick.
"I think I'm the only person in this room to be surprised to go first, because everyone keeps telling me they're not surprised.
"It's not about the money for me. I just wanted to be a part of this exciting tournament that is taking place in my own country."
Still, the financial rewards is impossible to ignore, especially when considering some of the other players who were among the first picks.
Dane Paterson and JJ Smuts, for example, were also chosen in the first round of the draft and will also earn R1.755 million.
"I'm over the moon for some of the guys. I've messaged every single guy that I know that's been picked. It's good recognition for our players in South Africa," Morris said.
"Guys are doubling their contracts and that's just for six weeks work. It's always nice to get a bonus like that. I think it will keep a lot of guys here."
Morris was particularly pleased for Paterson.
"He's been chosen first for his team and he's just been opening the bowling for South Western Districts. It's nice to see," said Morris.