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Mister Millions is worth much more

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Chris Morris, who is already known as the “Million Dollar Man” after fetching $1 million in the 2016 auction, saw his value rise further

Chris Morris believes the Proteas played a bad game at the wrong time on the England tour. Picture: Reuters

THE CSA T20 Challenge will feature the most expensive player in the Indian Premier League’s history after Proteas all-rounder Chris Morris was purchased at Thursday’s auction for $2.24million (R33 million).

Morris, who is already known as the “Million Dollar Man” after fetching $1 million in the 2016 auction, saw his value rise further when his former team, Rajasthan Royals, won a bidding war for his signature.

The record was previously held by former India batsman Yuvraj Singh, who was bought by Delhi Capitals (then Delhi Daredevils) in IPL 2015.

The 33-year-old Morris was part of the Royal Challengers Bangalore camp, but the Bangalore-based outfit, however, decided to part with Morris despite his decent performance in IPL 2020. He only played nine games in IPL 2020 due to fitness issues, but picked up 11 wickets at an excellent average of just over 19.

Morris’ overall IPL record, however, has been excellent as he has picked up 80 wickets at a brilliant average of just under 24 in 70 matches. Morris hasn’t featured for the Proteas since the 2019 World Cup, but will play for the Titans in the CSA T20 Challenge starting on Friday at Kingsmead.

Although the dates of the IPL have yet to be confirmed for this season, the Proteas could miss the opening week due to South Africa being scheduled to face Pakistan in a T20I series starting on April 2.

Last season’s runners-up Delhi Capitals have already made enquiries to the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) about the availability of Proteas fast bowlers Kagiso Rabada and Anrich Nortjé for the duration of the tournament.

Rabada, who was the leading wicket-taker in the IPL last season, however, made his stance abundantly clear Thursday.

“I might miss a week of IPL, but the country comes first,” the 25-year-old said. “Delhi has been my home in India, but national duty is a priority.”

Should Morris be selected for the Pakistan series, he would be under no obligation to play for the Proteas as he is not nationally contracted, unlike Rabada.