The Indian Premier League (IPL) is the biggest annual event on the global cricket calendar. Started in 2008 with a lot of hope but cautious scepticism, having gone through many ebbs and flows, the league has emerged stronger each year to showcase the world’s best talents on a single stage. The league has established itself as one of the biggest platforms for youngsters to flaunt their skills – a celebration where cricket’s largest global community meet, compete, share and build bridges.
Marking the 12th anniversary of the decorated league, cricket.com celebrates and honours the legends of the IPL by inducting them to the 'Cricket.com IPL Hall of Fame' – stars who not only dazzled on the field of play but elevated the stature of the league to skyrocketing heights by their sheer presence. This year, cricket.com will induct 15 such legends. Our 15th "Cricket.com Hall of Fame" inductee is the South Africa all-rounder - Albie Morkel.
Teams: Chennai Super Kings, Royal Challengers Bangalore, Delhi Daredevils, Rising Pune Supergiants
Trophies: 2 (2010 & 2011)
Play-off finishes: 4 (2008, 2009, 2012 & 2013)
- Having taken 85 wickets, Morkel has the fifth highest number of wickets by an overseas pacer in IPL
- Morkel is one among 8 players to have scored 500 or more runs and taken 75 or more wickets in IPL history
- Struck Virat Kohli for 28 runs in over which is the fourth-highest in a run-chase in IPL history
What makes him HoF worthy: All-round brilliance that helped his side to six playoff spots in a row
When you walk into bat with your team requiring 43 runs off 12 balls, you are mostly staring at a defeat, irrespective of which bowler you are facing. Albie Morkel, though, had other plans when he took Virat Kohli for 28 runs in the penultimate over inscribing his name in one of Chennai’s most stunning victories ever. This occurred in 2012 but the South African cricketer had left an indelible mark in IPL in the inaugural season itself when he was one of the first few players to define an allrounder’s role in the league. Playing 13 games, Morkel scored 241 runs in the 2008 season striking at 147.8 and pouched 17 wickets.
Morkel featured in CSK colors for six seasons and was a part of five finals - 2008, 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013 - lifting the trophy twice in 2010 and 2011. He was a complete bowler who could bowl in all phases of the innings. In case the side wanted to field a spin-heavy attack, he could be the pace bowling spearhead as well. In the batting department, he was a bludgeoner of the ball who batted at a strike-rate of 153 in the death overs during his time for the Yellow Brigade. In the absence of muscle strength, Morkel’s power-hitting game was based on his imperious bat swing and pristine timing. In 2008 against Deccan Chargers, he sent a Pragyan Ojha delivery to the Chepauk stadium’s roof for a 124-metre six, one of the longest sixes seen in professional cricket.
In 2011, he was the only overseas player retained by Chennai. Pairing up with Dwayne Bravo, he formed a solid all-round core for CSK down the order providing the side with flexible balance. However, he played only eight games for CSK in the 2013 season and was subsequently dropped post the 2013 season after an underwhelming performance by his standards. His role was taken over by Bravo but Morkel was still in demand for playing a massive role in making CSK one of the most successful T20 franchises globally.
He featured for Bangalore, Delhi and Pune for one season each in 2014, 2015 and 2016 respectively before fading away from the league. Overall, Morkel picked 85 wickets in 91 IPL games alongside scoring 974 runs at a strike-rate of 142.
His unbeaten 73* for DD in 2015 was the last of his memorable knocks in IPL where he almost won the game against his former side, CSK. Fighting a lone battle with six required off the last ball, an exhausted Morkel fell only six feet short from a maximum. It went for a one bounce four as Delhi lost the game by 1 run.
NOTE: The 'Cricket.com IPL Hall of Fame' only considers players who have retired from the IPL and last played in or before the 2018 season.