Steyn on track for Newlands return

South Africa fast bowler Dale Steyn says he is on track to make a comeback for the third Test against Australia which starts on 22 March at Newlands.

The 34-year-old Steyn, who is three wickets away from becoming South Africa’s highest wicket-taker in Tests, injured his heel in the first Test against India early in January and has not played any cricket since.

However, speaking to South African radio station Kfm, Steyn said he is back to bowling but will need to play a first-class game before he returns for the Proteas.

The next domestic first-class cricket in South Africa takes place from 15 March with Steyn’s side, the Titans, taking on the Cape Cobras in Paarl.

Steyn said: “I’m looking at trying to get into the third Test, get back with the boys and everything like that.

“I’ve had a bit of an unlucky one with my foot – Mitchell Starc has actually had something very similar to mine, but mine was just a little bit worse. It seems like every injury I get is really bad.

“I’m probably another two or three weeks away – I have to play one or two warm-up games.

“So hopefully everything goes according to plan, and by the end of next week, I should be back on the cricket field.”

Commenting on the events in the first Test, which the Proteas lost by 118 runs, specifically the confrontation between David Warner and Quinton de Kock, Steyn feels the home side’s enforcer has been shackled.

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Steyn mentioned Kagiso Rabada as one player that could get involved in some verbals with the Aussies but has been kept quiet because he could be banned if he was found guilty of anything.

Steyn continued: “One other guy that actually gets involved is KG (Rabada) – he really does get stuck in.

“But I think after some of his last few incidents where he got into trouble – he got a ban and a fine and everything like that – he kind of has the handcuffs around him right now, which is a little unfair because if you look at the way some of the Aussies are going about it- and I’m not standing here and complaining, and I hope I don’t get a fine for saying that – but you kind of feel that you are taking out our best competitor, especially with that kind of presence, if you take him out of the game, it’s like taking a knife to a gunfight really. It’s a little bit unfair.”