Selection convenor Linda Zondi is looking forward to Proteas fast bowler Dale Steyn building on the momentum gained during July’s Test series against Sri Lanka, come October’s ODIs against Zimbabwe.
The injury-prone Steyn managed just two wickets during the Test series defeat to the Sri Lankans, but recently returned from a successful stint with Hampshire in the County Championship Division One.
The right-arm pace ace clinched 20 wickets in five matches – and has since been named in the Proteas squad for next month’s three ODI’s against the Zimbabweans.
The 35-year-old Steyn has not played ODI cricket in almost two years. His last appearance in the intermediate format of the international game was against Australia in October 2016.
‘When he was in Sri Lanka, it was just important for us to see Dale getting through the matches and staying fit,’ Zondi told Sport24.
‘Now, against Zimbabwe, we want to see his performance and how his experience can fit into this ODI side.’
Steyn’s focus, too, remains firmly on the longest format.
He is currently South Africa’s joint leading Test wicket-taker, with 421 alongside veteran Shaun Pollock.
‘There’s 500 Test wickets and 100 Test appearances that I would still like to achieve,’ the 88-Test stalwart told BBC Radio Solent earlier this month.
‘But the reality is they’re both going to be quite difficult to achieve and will take me some time, possibly another two-and-a-half years.
‘Will South Africa still want to pick a 38-year-old by then? I don’t know.’