Pakistan v SA

Steyn still tops - Corrie

2010-11-08 13:34
Dale Steyn (File)
Eduan Roos

Dubai - One poor performance does not make Dale Steyn a bad bowler in ODI cricket.

That's why the South African paceman got another chance in the fifth and final ODI on Monday to regain his form ahead of the first of two Tests beginning on Friday against Pakistan.

Proteas coach Corrie van Zyl on Sunday defended Steyn after his poor performance in Friday's fourth match in the series against Pakistan.

The 'Phalaborwa Express' returned to the team after two months out due to injury, but was a shadow of the bowler who, on his day, more often than not has batsmen ducking and diving.

His return of 1/79 in his 10 overs was one of the worst of his career and was instrumental in helping Pakistan reach the South Africans' target of 275.

"I expected Dale to be rusty as it takes time to get back to your best after such a long period off the field," Van Zyl said on Sunday.

"But there is no doubt he is a world class player and one poor performance doesn't make him a bad bowler overnight."

Van Zyl said the Proteas camp would be satisfied if its premier fast bowler "gave away a few runs" as long as he in the process also "took a few wickets".

"Dale's role in the team is to take wickets and because he bowls aggressively, he will sometimes give away a few runs now and then," said the Proteas coach.

"However, it is important to remember that he is mostly used in the power-play overs when batsmen are on the look-out for boundaries due to the fielding restrictions."

Apart from Steyn, Wayne Parnell also returned to the team and the two were both punished, going for 132 runs in less than 19 overs.

"It is important that we don't judge Dale and Wayne only on this match and that we give them more than enough opportunity to get going again."

According to Steyn, the world's No 1 Test bowler, nobody was more disappointed than himself.

"It is not so much the fact that I gave away 79 runs, but that I didn't do better in my last over when I should've won the match for us," Steyn told to Sport24.

Steyn conceded 12 runs in the 48th over of the Pakistani run race, when the home team needed an unlikely 27 runs to square the series at 2-2.

"To have to wait so long for a chance to play and then cost your team the match is very disappointing, but I will learn from it and work even harder to help us win the next one," Steyn promised.

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