Cape Town – Dale Steyn has dropped heavy hints that he will
miss the Proteas’ one-day international away series against Bangladesh in early
July ...but perhaps be there in a mentoring capacity for any less experienced
The fast bowler turns 32 in late June, just ahead of those
assignments, and if he does sidestep the three-match roster – South Africa’s
first in the 50-overs format since their heartbreaking exit from the World Cup
at the semi-final stage – it would be in keeping with the pre-CWC speculation
that he will at the very least scale down his ODI involvement now.
Steyn not playing the series might also open the door for
the Proteas to blood an exciting young speedster like Kagiso Rabada, 19, who
will probably play in the Twenty20 portion of the tour anyway (he has three
caps in that format) but then finally get a crack in the more extended
The Phalaborwa Express would be back in national colours,
all going well, for the two-Test main event of the trip; the five-day game
remains very much his forte and where his legend has overwhelmingly been forged.
In an interview with Wisden India on Monday (http://www.wisdenindia.com/cricket-article/steyn-steyn-demands-trial-combat/163679)
the Sunrisers Hyderabad player in the IPL said: “I love playing Test cricket
and I know that my days are numbered with regards to how many Test matches I’m
going to have left, so I’d prefer to play a lot more Test cricket.”
Nevertheless, he did not appear to completely preclude the
possibility of one further crack, in English conditions in 2019, at breaking
South Africa’s World Cup jinx, even if he may also have been referring to the
more frequent opportunities presented for major-tournament success via the ICC
World Twenty20 route every two years.
“It might sound very cocky or naive of me, or self-centred,
but I want to win a World Cup for my country, and they only come around once
every four years.
“If you’re playing in the Twenty20 World Cup, luckily they come
around every year (sic).
“So with due respect to places like Bangladesh or Zimbabwe,
going and playing three ODIs in Bangladesh does nothing for my confidence as
opposed to knowing that I’m going to a World Cup.
“At this stage of my career, I’d rather be saving myself to
go and participate in the major tournaments, rather than wasting the few balls
I have left in my career in a Bangladesh match.
“I’d rather go to Bangladesh to help and support future
South African bowlers, and use what is left of the 10,000 or 20,000 deliveries
that I have left in my body for the big tournament.
“That’s where I’m at personally. At the beginning of my
career, I would have done everything; I would have gone every tournament and to
“But I’ve done it all now.”
Steyn also says that he hasn’t had the time to digest yet
the latest World Cup disappointment, given that he went straight into the IPL
“You have to find a mask and some kind of way to just cover
that and deal with it later. When I get some time off is when I’ll sit down,
empty out that World Cup bag and go through some emotions of that.
“Once I’m done dealing with that, I’ll move on to the next
thing again. It hurts, but it’s life, man. I’ll unpackage that baby later and
see where we went wrong. I’m really not too fazed now; it’s gone, it’s done,
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