Dale Steyn targets Steve Smith’s wicket in the upcoming Test series
Published - Oct 30, 2016 10:37 am | Updated - Oct 30, 2016 10:37 am
Seldom it happens that a Test series in Australia starts without any verbal off-field chatters between the two sides in an attempt to gain a psychological lead before the actual cricket starts on the field. Surprisingly, the first blow has come from the touring party as Dale Steyn has said that he will be targeting the opposition skipper, Steve Smith in the upcoming Test series.
Steyn has singled out Steve Smith as a key scalp for South Africa. The no.2 ranked Test bowler said that Aussie captains lead the attack for them and if you take down their leader, there is a good chance of the rest of the side sinking with him.
“You look at guys who are great players like Steve Waugh and not many people can name a team underneath him, but you remember Steve Waugh, Ricky Ponting and Michael Clarke. Steve Smith falls into that category. The moment you can get hold of their captain, the rest of the players rely heavily on him,” said Steyn explaining his statement.
Steyn lost the top spot in the Test bowling rankings to Ravi Ashwin but he is still the highest ranked fast bowler in the world in Test cricket. Steve Smith, on the other hand, had struggled with his form on the recent tour to South Africa where he scored a hundred but looked totally out of sorts in the other games. He is still the no. 1 ranked Test batsman in the world at present and did start this year’s Sheffield Shield season with a hundred but will be under some pressure in the Test series, especially considering Australia’s bad form in international cricket.
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Steyn also seemed pretty confident of his fellow fast bowlers Morne Morkel, Vernon Philander and Kagiso Rabada. He talked fondly of Rabada praising the 21-year old fast bowler as the future of South Africa cricket. Last year on the tour to India, Steyn was quoted saying, “Rabada is much more talented than I was at the age of 20.”
South Africa have won their last two Test series in Australia and are pretty confident for the third victory in a row even without (A)bsolutely (B)rilliant de Villiers who played a key role in South Africa’s past 2 victories. Steyn claimed that South Africa has one of the best bowling attacks in the world and that has been the prime reason they have won their last two test series down under.
“If we can do what we’ve done in the past there’s no reason we can’t knock over the top-order, middle-order and tail,” Steyn said.
South Africa might be in a good zone right now after the clean sweep against Australia in the ODI series last month but Steyn is still expecting a fired-up Aussie side. No matter who win the battle, it would surely be an intriguing contest to watch between world’s highest ranked fast bowler and the no. 1 Test batsman at present.