Dale Steyn takes five and proves his fitness
Dale Steyn’s 5/66 for Hampshire in Yorkshire’s first innings in a county championship match in Southampton has grabbed its deserved share of headlines.
Steyn started his haul in his third over by clean bowling Cheteshwar Pujara with a superb delivery that pitched on middle and straightened viciously to uproot the India star’s off and middle stumps.
Pujara also fell to Steyn‚ for a fourth-ball duck‚ in the one-day semi-final in Southampton last Monday.
But the more important fact‚ for South Africans‚ was that Steyn came through 29 overs in the first innings of the championship match and bowled another 21 in the second dig.
His economy rates — 2.27 and 2.23 — offered further evidence that he is getting back to his best ahead of South Africa’s Test series in Sri Lanka next month.
Steyn‚ who needs three more wickets to surpass Shaun Pollock as South Africa’s leading Test bowler‚ has spent much of the past 18 months sidelined by shoulder and heel injuries.
There’s more good news for Saffers keeping an eye on Steyn from afar in that he will be rested for Hampshire’s match against Lancashire at Old Trafford‚ which started on Monday.
But only to keep him fresh for the one-day final against Kent at Lord’s on Saturday.