Dale Steyn has been ruled out of the third Test against England after failing to recover from a shoulder injury.
Steyn picked up the injury in the first Test in Durban and will not recover in time to feature at the Wanderers. It’s big blow to new captain AB de Villiers as South Africa try and find a way bank into the series they trail 1-0.
Steyn was given a ’50-50′ chance of being fit after the Newlands Test, but the injury is clearly more severe than what was originally thought.
It means Chris Morris will probably play in his second Test starting on Thursday as the only decision now becomes whether the Proteas go with four seamers or not. If they do, Dane Piedt will miss out.
‘I don’t think it’s the end of Dale Steyn, coach Russell Domingo said. ‘All players will experience some sort of niggles. He is a great athelete. He is as fit as they can come. We know he is a great bowler. He is the best bowler in the world. We haven’t had him since the first Test in India tour and that has been disappointing.’
All the special investigations have been done on Steyn’s shoulder and the medical team is awaiting further opinion from the specialist on how best to manage the injury. He has been given a week’s rest on the advice of the medical team.
Domingo said AB de Villiers was looking forward to captaining the side in his firs Test.
‘I don’t see too much of a change in the change room because it’s all the same players, they have all played under AB (De Villiers) in the one-day side so it’s not too much of an adjustment,’ Domingo said.
‘We want to build on our performance from Cape Town, there were a lot of positives for us. With the ball in the second innings some of our young inexperienced bowlers bowled really well, they learnt lessons from the first innings quickly, that was exciting for us.
‘AB is really looking forward to doing the captaincy,’ Domingo said. ‘He has always wanted to captain the Test side and he is really excited by the challenge. It could bring out the best of AB de Villiers; we have seen in the past the type of innings he has played in One-Day International cricket when he has been the captain. He is an inspirational leader by the way he goes about his business as a player.
‘Hashim in my opinion has done a really good job. He took over a squad in transition and some players have really come through under his leadership in the Test side. That fatherly guidance that he has offered to some players will be missed I suppose but it will continue on the side.’