CAPE TOWN – Is it true? Is Dale Steyn back?
Well, that is what the man himself said on social media on Thursday, and it’s not a moment too soon.
The under-fire Proteas have missed their ace paceman in 2017, most notably in the marathon tour of England, where they lost series in all three formats against the hosts and came a-cropper in the ICC Champions Trophy.
Steyn has been out of the loop since returning home early from the Australian tour last November with a shoulder injury.
The 34-year-old fast bowler has been working hard in his rehabilitation process, while his natural fitness will ensure that he would be ready to send down those away-swinging thunderbolts as soon as his shoulder is 100 percent.
And on Thursday, he dropped a big hint that he will be back soon, posting on Instagram and Twitter, “The wait is over”, with a picture of his trademark “chainsaw” celebration.
A post shared by 🔘 (@dalesteyn) on
The next assignment for the Proteas – likely to be under a new coach in Ottis Gibson – is a two-Test series against Bangladesh next month, with the first game at Senwes Park in Potchefstroom on September 28.
Of course, Steyn would want to get in some game time before that, which may see him turn out for Western Province in the Africa T20 Cup.
WP are involved in the first weekend of action at Willowmoore Park in Benoni from August 25-27, where they will face Namibia, SWD and Easterns on consecutive days.
The Proteas brainstrust will hope that Steyn can come through that, as they can certainly do with the man who has 417 Test wickets to his name following the 3-1 defeat to England.
In addition, there are doubts about whether Morné Morkel will continue to feature for South Africa after reports of him considering a Kolpak deal in English county cricket, while Vernon Philander also missed the last England Test with a back injury.