Injury scare for Albie Morkel
Albie Morkel, the South Africa allrounder, is an injury worry after he sustained lower back spasms in a warm-up match against New Zealand at the World T20 on Monday. Morkel batted four deliveries and hit 15 runs, including a six, but was only able to bowl nine balls before leaving the field.
He underwent* an MRI scan on Tuesday but it proved inconclusive. He will undergo a fitness test on Thursday, before South Africa take on Zimbabwe, to determine his availability for the game.
"Albie woke up feeling much better this morning (Tuesday) but we sent him for an MRI scan as a precautionary measure. The results from the scan are inconclusive but the positive aspect for us is that he is improving by the day," Mohammad Moosajee, team manager said. "He will continue to receive treatment from the team physiotherapist, Brandon Jackson and a decision on his availability for our opening match of the ICC World Twenty20 will only be taken on Thursday morning, subject to him passing a fitness test."
The latest niggle is not the only injury Morkel has battled with recently. An ankle sprain ruled him out of contention for the second Test between South Africa and England in early August. Although he was unlikely to feature in the starting XI, the tweak was serious enough for South Africa to call up a replacement in Faf du Plessis.
Morkel's injury this time is likely to have a greater impact on the team balance. Morkel and Jacques Kallis are the only two seam-bowling allrounders in the squad. His role in the middle order and reputation as a finisher is something South Africa will be looking forward to using.
* - 1430 GMT, September 18, 2012 - The story was updated to include the result of the MRI scan