IPL 2021 suspended: ‘It was chaos at team hotel,’ RR’s Chris Morris reveals scenes after IPL suspension

IPL 2021 suspended: ‘It was chaos at team hotel,’ RR’s Chris Morris reveals scenes after IPL suspension
IPL 2021 suspended: ‘It was chaos at team hotel,’ RR’s Chris Morris reveals scenes after IPL suspension

IPL 2021 suspended: As the BCCI decided to suspend the IPL 2021 with rising cases of COVID-19 insider teams’ bio-bubble, Rajasthan Royals’ Chris Morris revealed that there was chaos in the team hotel with the England players panicking as they would have to quarantine for 14 days in the UK and no hotel rooms were available. The South African all-rounder and IPL’s most expensive player ever returned home on Thursday with Proteas teammates and is currently serving a 10-day quarantine at home.

Chris Morris said that alarm bells started going off when two Kolkata Knight Riders players — Varun Chakaravarthy and Sandeep Warrier tested positive for COVID-19 with five more followed the next day in Chennai Super Kings (two coaches), Sunrisers Hyderabad and Delhi Capitals. He said that he was relieved to reach home safely.

“Look, obviously I’m relieved. The moment we heard that, when players are testing positive, inside the bubble, then everyone starts asking questions. The alarm bells definitely started going off for all of us. By Monday when they postponed that game (between Kolkata and Royal Challengers Bangalore), we knew the tournament was under pressure to continue,” Chris Morris told IOL.

Also Read: IPL 2021: After returning from IPL, RR’s Chetan Sakariya’s spends days at hospital for COVID-19 positive father

IPL 2021 suspended: ‘England guys were panicking,’ Morris says

A few days before IPL 2021 was suspended, his Rajasthan Royals teammate Andre Tye left for Australia as the country’s government imposed a travel ban on India. However, Chris Morris revealed that it was England players who were panicking the most as they had to spend 14 days in hard quarantine.

“The England guys especially were panicking because they needed to isolate in hotels in England first, and apparently there weren’t any rooms,” Chris Morris said.

“I was chatting to our team doctor, whose room was across the hallway from my mine in the hotel, and Kumar Sangakarra (Rajasthan Royals’ head coach) came around the corner and drew his finger across his throat, and then we knew it was over. And then it was chaos!” Morris said.

Also Read: ICC WTC Finals: BCCI to create bio-bubble in India before travelling to England for WTC final

IPL 2021 suspended: ‘Rajasthan Royals management dealt with it well,’ Morris says

However, Chris Morris was full of praise for Rajasthan Royals team management and Cricket South Africa as they arranged everything quickly for players’ safe return.

“The Royals’ management were brilliant, they had their fingers on the pulse, made everyone feel as comfortable as possible. I know poor Gerald was panicking a bit, I mean he’s only 20 and all this is going on. I tried to keep him under my wing a bit and made sure he was ready when the 12.30 am pick up came at the hotel. It was eerie, it was just a handful of us in that whole hotel at the time.”

“I was chatting to our team doctor, whose room was across the hallway from my mine in the hotel, and Kumar (Sangakarra, the Royals’ head coach) came around the corner, and drew his finger across his throat, and then we knew it was over,” said Morris. “And then it was chaos!”

Also Read: ICC T20 World Cup: Australia’s Pat Cummins says it’s too early to move T20 WC out of India to UAE

Morris was full of praise for the Royals’ management and Cricket SA and the SA Cricketers Association. “The Royals’ management were brilliant, they had their fingers on the pulse, made everyone feel as comfortable as possible. I know poor Gerald Coetzee was panicking a bit, I mean he’s only 20 and all this is going on. I tried to keep him under my wing a bit and made sure he was ready when the 12.30am pick up came at the hotel. It was eerie, it was just a handful of us in that whole hotel at the time,” Morris said.

IPL 2021 suspended: ‘IPL amid COVID-19 crisis created a moral dilemma,’ Morris says

However, it was a moral dilemma for Chris Morris as India faced the second wave of COVID-19 pandemic, recording over 400,000 cases a day. The crisis brought a lot of painful memories with patients and their families running from hospitals to hospitals in search for bed and oxygen.

“For me, this was always a two-fold thing; on the one hand we’re playing a tournament, all happy and smiling in a bubble, while outside so many people are suffering. On the flip side of it, there was the fact that by playing, we were ensuring people actually stayed at home, watched us and at least had something to smile about or something else to think about – even if it was being unhappy with how we played in a game – for three hours each night,” Chris Morris said.

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