South Africa pace bowler Dale Steyn has hinted on making a comeback after being out of action for nearly an year due to an injury during South Africa’s tour of Australia in November last year and later he had a surgery of the shoulder.
“It happens quite quickly. I go off three paces on the Monday, then Wednesday I go off five paces, but I bowl 26 balls. Then Friday, I bowl off five paces but I bowl 30 balls. At the moment, where I am at right now, I bowl Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays and at about 70% or 80% of my full run-up, at about 60-70%,” Steyn told ESPNcricinfo at a sponsor event on Thursday. “Next week, I will move it to bowling on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday off and bowling again Thursday and Friday. And we just up the percentage every week so eventually when we play the T20s, I will going full run-up, full-pace.”
Talking about his bowling, Steyn insisted that he just needs to focus on bowling fast as he has been out of action for almost an year.
“My arm is perfect, if anything its stronger than it was before because its reinforced with a pin,” he joked. “It’s 100% now. I’ve just got to start reminding myself how to bowl at high speeds because I haven’t done it for a year.”
“There’s only ever been two of us that have ever broken this bone in cricket. To diagnose a time frame for how long it was going to take to come back was quite difficult. It’s not like a hamstring, where they’ve had ten billion people that have torn hamstrings and they say in six to eight weeks you will be up and running again. They can’t say three months and you will be up and running again, six months. I was kind of a guinea pig going through this whole process and the other guy never went back to playing cricket, he was a schoolboy,” Steyn said.
Mentioning about his injuries, the right-arm fast bowler suggested, “When I originally broke the bone, I also tore my bicep tendon, my pec and a muscle at the back called the infraspinatus. That’s three muscles that ruptured when I broke that bone. So the bone took a while to heal and strengthen but then those muscles took a long time to recover. That’s why it took so long and then when I started to bowl, typical me, I was trying to go from 0 to 100 quickly and I injured a pec. We are finally at a point where everything is strong, now it’s a case don’t do anything stupid. As cricketers we get injured all the time. I go for a run up the mountain and I could get a hamstring injury.”
“It’s pretty tough bowling 150 kilometres normally. Now I’ve got to do it with a broken bone in my arm. It’s a tough ask but I think I am doing okay.”
Steyn also talked about Ottis Gibson who was recently selected as South Africa’s head coach and said that it’s an advantage for him and other fast bowlers to have an ex-bowler as the head coach.
“It’s the first time in my career I have had a head coach who was a bowler. With all due respect to the previous coaches, they were all batters, they see the game differently to the way that bowlers see the game. When I sat in one or two meetings, I saw Ottis’ eyes light up when KG [Kagiso Rabada] was talking, I saw his eyes light up when Morne [Morkel] was talking; they didn’t light up so much when Hashim [Amla] was talking.It gets me excited because he is on the same wavelength as us. For the first time its also great to see that the head coach is out in the middle when the bowlers are bowling and not in the nets with the batters. The love is being shared a little and I think the bowlers will start to get taken a little bit more seriously when it comes to decision making. I do feel they have a lot of offer. It has been batter dominant for a long time, so I am quite excited about the head coach being an ex-bowler.”