What he said:
“I go on holiday for longer than that series is going to last.”
South African pacer, Dale Steyn, is disbelieving that just two Tests against Australia at home will test (pun intended) both sides’ character.
Steyn is that disappearing breed of quickies who believe that the longer form of the game is where men prove their mettle.
There’s a lot of guys who can bowl 150km/h when you give them the ball when they’re fresh in the morning, but can they do it late in the afternoon when it’s boiling hot and they’re bowling their 20th over for the day? I want to be able to do that and I want to be the only guy who is able to do that.
I want to be in your face all day, not for little periods of time, that is pretty much my inspiration. I want the opposition to walk off and say, ‘Shit, that was tough’.
On the two-match series:
I won’t lie to you, I’m very, very disappointed. Everyone is talking about Test cricket still being the ultimate in everybody’s minds and yet we are only playing two Test matches. Also in England next year, our series has been changed from five Test matches to three.
‘We want people to want to play Test matches. We want kids to aspire to that, and yet two of the biggest Test nations in the world are only playing two Test matches. I go on holiday for longer than that series is going to last. I hope somebody gets up and decides to do something about it. We want it to be competitive and hard and, seriously, two Test matches is not enough.
Steyn claims he is a smarter bowler nowadays:
I think I am a little bit more street-smart. Each day you play you don’t necessarily get better but you get a bit wiser and that can work against you because you don’t use your natural instincts, but I think I’m at the stage now where I use a bit of both.”
I would love to bowl 160 km/h. Any fast bowler would love to do that. But for me that is almost impossible. Someone like ‘Taity’ who is only playing T20 these days, it’s very possible for him to do that all the time. It’s like asking Usain Bolt to run the 100 metres in under 10 seconds every day of the week for 30 days, it’s just not going to happen.
The thing I’ve got to concentrate on for South Africa is bowling at good pace and if the ball is in the right area that will cause enough trouble.
What Dale Steyn really meant:
“Two tests, ten days of Test cricket! I take off for two weeks—at least!”
What Dale Steyn definitely didn’t:
“Don’t pay me my match fee. It feels as though I’m vacationing.”