Image courtesy of: CNN IBN
“I had a side strain, groin, glute, neck and a bit of an ankle problem”
South Africa pace demon Dale Steyn is fired up about making his international comeback after being sidelined for the past three months due to the fact that he suffered numerous injuries during the Champions Trophy in June.
During the Champions Trophy, Steyn revealed that he was struggling with no fewer than five injuries and he was subsequently forced to miss South Africa’s tour of Sri Lanka in July.
“There’s nothing better than a bit of game time,” Steyn said. “Playing a Twenty20 game, you’re still out in the field on your feet. You’re still bowling your overs at high intensity.
“After the Champions Trophy in England, people will remember I didn’t play a lot of cricket there. I ended up with about five injuries walking away from that tournament. I had a side strain, groin, glute, neck and a bit of an ankle problem.”
Steyn also revealed that he could do “absolutely nothing” during the first month of his rehabilitation.
“The doctors said I had to be off my feet for the next four weeks,” he said. “I had four weeks where I did absolutely nothing, where I did no running or gyming.”
Since then he has begun training longer and harder in anticipation for South Africa’s tour of the United Arab Emirates, where they will square off against Pakistan.
“I’ve had four weeks where I’ve been training really hard,” he added. “I’ve [got] back to the gym, running and bowling.
“Two sessions a day for an hour and a half in the morning, then get back again in the afternoon. I haven’t been going to bed so early since I was in primary school, so it shows that I’ve been working quite hard.”
With the pitches in the United Arab Emirates not likely to offer him much pace or bounce, Steyn knows he will have to think on his feet and take a more pragmatic approach towards his bowling.
“You always want to play on wickets that are green and moving around,” he said. “You don’t always get those opportunities. That’s why we play cricket.
“We get to play in some of the more difficult places in the world. If you just played at home, you could be a fantastic bowler with great skills on easy wickets to bowl on. It’s nice to go and test your skills somewhere where those skills are rarely tested. There’s not a lot of movement through the air, not a lot off the deck, so that’s nice. It can be frustrating at times, but that’s why we play these games.”
The 30-year-old also stated that it was crucial South Africa lived up to everyone’s expectations as they are currently the number one Test team in the world.
“It would be fantastic if we could go there and win because it would hold us up there in that No.1 spot for a bit longer,” Steyn said. “It would make it difficult for other teams to knock us off that podium.”