8 Jun 2013

Morkel out of Champions Trophy

9:07 am on 8 June 2013

Beleaguered South Africa have suffered a major blow after fast bowler Morne Morkel was ruled out of the rest of the Champions Trophy with a leg injury.

Morkel limped off while bowling his seventh over during Thursday's 26-run loss to India, and scans confirmed a grade one injury on the left quadricep, with recovery expected to take three weeks.

Morkel will be replaced by Chris Morris, a 26-year-old seamer who has played two Twenty20 matches for South Africa, but has yet to appear in an one-day international.

AB de Villiers' men must defeat Pakistan in Birmingham on Monday to keep their hopes alive of taking one of the two semi-final spots from group B, which also features the West Indies.

The Proteas, already without veterans Graeme Smith and Jacques Kallis for the eight-nation tournament, are sweating over fast bowler Dale Steyn's side strain which forced him to sit out on Thursday.

Steyn is not a certain starter against Pakistan, who enjoyed a six-wicket win over the Proteas in the warm-up game.