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Dale Steyn tips Mohammad Abbas to be the next No.1 Test bowler, AB de Villiers responds

Abbas already has over 15 wickets in the ongoing Test series against Australia.

Mohammad Abbas
Mohammad Abbas. (Photo Source: KARIM SAHIB/AFP/Getty Images)

South African fast bowler Dale Steyn was all praises for Pakistani quick Mohammad Abbas, predicting he’d be the next no.1 bowler in Tests. Although the spinners took centre-stage in Dubai to push Australia to the ropes, Abbas was very much amongst the wickets, finishing the match with 7 against his name. In the second and deciding Test at Abu Dhabi, he became the protagonist as Pakistan come within touching distance of an emphatic win over the inexperienced Australians.

Abbas got yet another five-for in the Abu Dhabi Test, finishing the first innings with figures of 5 for 33. He picked up the key wicket of Usman Khawaja early in the innings and came back to dismiss Shaun Marsh and Travis Head in quick succession.

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Later in the day, he removed the dangerous Mitchell Starc, who looked good to tee off after having got to 34. The pacer hence became the second fastest Pakistani bowler to 50 Test wickets, tied with the great Waqar Younis as well as Mohammad Asif, to whom he’s been so often compared.

Steyn took to Twitter to say, “I see a new number 1 Test bowler coming… Mohammad Abbas”

Steyn and AB engage in banter

This sparked off a humorous conversation between Steyn the one and only AB de Villiers, who has a unique connection with the Pakistani paceman’s name. While many were unable to understand what the two South African legends were on about, a bit of digging up revealed that AB was himself called ‘Abbas’. But his South African teammates had given their very own twist to this name.

In an earlier interview with Prasanna Agoram, the team’s performance analyst, he gave some very interesting insights into AB’s life, saying, “Now, he won’t be there for that World Cup. I can’t begin to even think about all that now. Instead, this is the time to look at the great memories that Abbas has given us. We call him Abbas. It’s simple: Abbas from Abraham de Villiers, but our team says it with different meaning. Just separate ‘A’ from it, and you will get it: It’s ‘A Boss’ for us, the way some of us mean it. Because he is the boss. Can anyone who has seen him bat or field deny that?”

With this for context, it’d be easier to understand why AB de Villiers tweeted, “I’ll take just the Abbas #lifelongdream”, to which Steyn replied, “Haha! Wouldn’t put it last you to do it either!”

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