Steyn aims to break SA Test-wicket record

Dale Steyn of South Africa celebrates after taking the wicket of Wriddhiman Saha of India during day 2 of the Sunfoil Cricket Test Match between South Africa and India at Newlands Cricket Ground, Cape Town on January 6 2018. File picture
Dale Steyn of South Africa celebrates after taking the wicket of Wriddhiman Saha of India during day 2 of the Sunfoil Cricket Test Match between South Africa and India at Newlands Cricket Ground, Cape Town on January 6 2018. File picture
Image: Chris Ricco/BackpagePix

Speedster Dale Steyn will be aiming to become South Africa’s all-time leading Test wicket taker when the Proteas take on Pakistan in the Boxing Day (Day of Goodwill) Test at SuperSport Park.

Steyn joined Shaun Pollock as the country’s joint-highest wicket taker with 421 when he claimed the scalp of Lakshan Sandakan on the third day of the first Test against Sri Lanka in Galle back in July.

He then had a wicket-less second Test against the same opponents and has not played another since, with the Pakistan encounter his next opportunity to take an outright lead.

Steyn will not be the only player eager to impress, with new cap Zubayr Hamza set to make his debut for the Proteas along with Dane Paterson, who has been added to the first Test squad to replace Vernon Philander, who has been ruled out with a fractured finger.

If the 23-year-old Hamza plays in the match it will be his first appearance in Proteas colours, while the 29-year-old Paterson has played four ODIs and eight T20s.

Hamza will come into the match with some confidence after scoring an unbeaten 74 for the Cobras against the Warriors in Port Elizabeth over the past weekend, while Paterson picked up four wickets across two innings.

Struggling Proteas batsman Hashim Amla also got in some good practice in the match, scoring 61 in the second innings, and he will hope to build on that against Pakistan.

Proteas captain Faf du Plessis also got in a good stint over the weekend, scoring 84 for the Titans in their win over the Knights.

Despite getting limited overs in against the Lions, Dolphins and Proteas spinner Keshav Maharaj still managed to claim three wickets.

The Pakistan team themselves will be in a confident mood after enjoying a sixwicket win over the South Africa Invitation XI in a three-day warm-up match in Benoni that ended on Friday.

The action gets under way on Wednesday at 10am.

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