Heartbroken Rhodes out of WC, Smith likely replacement
Published: Friday, February 14, 2003, 23:53 [IST]
Rhodes insists he can hang on to his place despite injury
Potchefstroom: South Africa's Jonty Rhodes' dreams of becoming a World Cup winner were crushed on Thursday when it was revealed that his hand injury would not heal on time for him to play any further part in the tournament. The 33-year-old, who broke his hand in a fielding accident in the match against Kenya on Wednesday, was immediately dropped from the squad and is likely to be replaced by Graeme Smith. "He is very, very disappointed. He had been hoping to be back in time to play some part in the World Cup later in the tournament," a team spokesman said. "But the specialist said that it would be at least four weeks before it healed and another week to recover so there just wasn't the time." Rhodes wanted to hang onto to his place despite the injury which he picked up when he tried to catch Kenya's Maurice Odumbe. An X-ray here revealed a break of the fifth metacarpal bone before he went to hospital in Johannesburg where two pins were inserted to hold the bone together. Rhodes broke the same bone in his left hand in Australia on the 1992-93 tour. The all-action fielder will be replaced in the squad by Smith if the World Cup technical committee approve the team's application on Thursday with Rhodes' place in the starting line-up likely to go to on-form all-rounder Andrew Hall. Rhodes and fast bowler Allan Donald are the only South Africans to have played in all their country's four World Cup campaigns. Rhodes gained world fame when he dived at full stretch into the stumps to run out Inzamam-ul-Haq of Pakistan during a World Cup match in Brisbane, Australia, in 1992.