Dale Steyn has admitted he has never been more scared in his life after parts of Cape Town were left devastated by raging fires over the last week.
Steyn’s house in Stonehurst, Westlake was one of hundreds who had to be evacuated as fires swept through big parts of Cape Town’s south peninsula.
‘To be honest with you, there’s a lot on my mind over the last couple games,’ Steyn said at a press conference before South Africa’s game against Pakistan on Saturday.
Steyn was asked about the fires after he had trouble remembering all the teams South Africa played against in the pool stage when asked about his bowling performances at the World Cup.
‘We’ve had some terrible fires back home, and just my mind has been somewhere else the last couple days. It wasn’t easy. I was actually staying in Canberra and woke up and I left my phone on silent that night. So I woke up that morning and had like 80 messages or something, 30 missed calls.
‘So I quickly jumped on it and realised the fires were a lot closer to my home than initially thought. The scariest part came about 3:30 in the morning in Cape Town. I don’t know what time it was in Canberra. But the people looking after my house called me and said, listen, you’ve got five minutes we’re evacuating. What do you want us to take out of your house?’ Steyn recounted his ordeal.
‘I’ve never been more scared in my life. I’m sitting halfway across the world, and everything that I’ve ever earned or gotten in my life, every wicket, every ball, every bit of clothing in my 31 years is in that house. So it was pretty scary to think what do you tell this person? They’ve got five minutes to take everything out. I was pretty much shitting myself.’
Steyn praised the firefighters and volunteers who had been fighting the blaze day and night for the best part of a week.
‘Yeah, just tremendous job by all those firefighters and the volunteers that put their lives at risk and never met me before, never met most of the people. They were just kind of like throwing themselves at it and putting out those fires.
‘If I was at home I’d dive straight into it and do what I can to help. It really is terrible. A lot of animals, pets, homes, nobody should go through that kind of stuff. It’s a pretty tough time back home right now.’