Dale Steyn says he was put on earth to play Test cricket

Dale Steyn
Dale Steyn was picked up 10 wickets in the New Zealand Test series
Debdoot Das

South African speedster Dale Steyn who has returned to international cricket after a long injury lay-off has said he was sent to earth to play Test matches.Steyn had an injury riddled 2015-2016 season which had cast a doubt over his future. He was sidelined for eight Test matches and left out of the One-Day International outfit which traveled to West Indies in June.

However, Steyn was back with some vengeance as he picked up match figures of 8/99 against New Zealand in Centurion in the second match of the Test series."I just want to play. I don't know if I will wake up in a month and can't do it anymore or if I will wake up in four years and can't do it anymore. I am just really enjoying playing Test cricket. I love it. It's what I feel I have been put on earth to do," Steyn was quoted by Espncricinfo.

Also Read: South Africa vs New Zealand 2016: Dale Steyn slams Neil Wagner for lacking courage in Centurion Test

"I do not know when to pull the plug or when the time will come to make that decision, but if I am still making batters jump around and the pace is there, I will carry on doing what I am doing."Steyn finished the series with 10 wickets to his credit which includes a five-for in the second innings at Centurion. He was also the leading wicket-taker in the series.

Asked if he ever thought he would not achieve full fitness, Steyn said:”No, there was never any doubt. I tried to rush back for the Bangalore Test and if I hadn't, I would have probably played the (rest of the) series against India," Steyn said, referring to the groin injury he picked while playing in the tour.

"Then, against England, I tried to go from 0 to 100 too quickly and I broke a bone in my shoulder which is very, very rare. It was not a case of age or ability. There was no doubt that my ability was still there or that I could play this game anymore."

Steyn tried to regain full fitness by playing in T20 leagues around the world like the IPL, CPL and with Glamorgan but still he needed to see if he could bowl longer spells. Before the series he had said he would want to get through it without an injury. He did so and bowled more overs than anyone else in the South African pace attack and once again established himself as the spearhead.But he did not want to regard himself as more important than anyone else in the side.

"This bowling unit is at a stage where everyone can rely on everybody - you don't have to rely on me," he said. "Look at KG (Kagiso Rabada), he took 13 wickets here last time (against England). It's now about the culture in the side. You can step in and perform. It's not aimed at one player to mentor anyone."

The 33-year-old added he would ideally want to finish his career after winning a World Cup.

"When I am 70 years old that's not what I am going to remember," Steyn said. "I will remember tonight. I will remember winning in Australia, I will remember winning in England, and hopefully I will remember winning a World Cup too."

Edited by Staff Editor
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