Peter Pollock and the brilliant interview

Wonderful interview at the ESPNCricinfo site – with Peter Pollock. read it here.

Excerpt:

I can honestly say that I could never give back to cricket what it gave to me. And it was not money at all. A platform, what it has done for Graeme and I and Shaun, you can’t get it anywhere. Money can’t buy that.

Allan Donald, Stop Being So Damn Modest

The interview is here, click.

Dale Steyn is not

Without a shadow of a doubt, the greatest bowler South Africa has ever had.

You are the shadow of a doubt. Because you were better. Marginally better, but better.

I think that he had a spell – a duel with Paul Collingwood – in Cape Town. It was a Test match I commented on, a Test match in which England were in trouble. Steyn went past the outside edge probably four times an over in which he bowled at 148-150kph without any luck. I think it was one of those spells where you deserve a six-for or a seven-for. But it didn’t quite work out. England managed to draw the game right at the death, being nine-down. That was probably one of the best spells I’ve seen without any results.

It is probably one of the best, but not the best. Because the best was yours, with Atherton batting. And you got him out fair and square, and would have won the Saffers the match if not for an umpiring error.

SWOT Analysis – How long will Dale Steyn remain a top bowler?

How long will Dale Steyn remain a top bowler, and continue to play for the South African national team? Will he remain a great bowler after 30?

Strengths:

Clean bowling action.

Strong, wiry, non-bulky, non-Brett Schultz frame

Some abilities as a swing bowler.

Reasonable Stamina.

Weaknesses:

In the short-to-medium term, nothing.

Is a shortish fast bowler, and skids on to the batsman.

Puts a lot of pressure on to himself on the follow through.

Bounce is not a weapon.

Similar to Allan Donald, does not have loop to his bowling. The ‘skim the surface’ guys last longer than the ‘hit the deck’ guys.

Opportunities:

Swing. Can definitely convert himself into a crafty, Damien Fleming-esque swing bowler when the extreme pace has deserted him.

Sports Medicine. And South Africa is well nigh the best in the cricket world in that.

A handy bat.

Threats:

The assembly-line of fast bowlers for the Saffers.

Morne Morkel. In the long term, Morkel with his height and bounce will be a greater threat than Steyn at 30 (and will be better at playing the Ntini role). And he is a better bat.

Skiddy bowlers, unless they are Malcolm Marshall, never were the same after they were 30.

 

Final Analysis –

Steyn will retire / will be sacked with 300 wickets or so, at around the age of 31. He might well end up being remembered as an all-time great, in line for being the third best skiddy fast bowler of all time after Malcolm Marshall (who of course is the greatest fast bowler of all time IMHO), and Waqar Younis.

How important is

Graeme Smith

Graeme Smith

… this guy for the South African cricket team?

As important as

Gary Kirsten

Gary Kirsten

was, for the most part of the last decade of the last millennium …

Gary Kirsten has long been one of my favourite players: dour, gritty, doing a job and doing it well….

Hope he does the job well for the Indian team. May it be known as Dhoni’s team much like the last team was Ganguly’s, we all know the great work put in by John Wright for ensuring the same. May it be Dhoni, along with Kirsten, to take the next step forward. And believe me, the werewithal is all right there.

Quick Steyn

Dale Steyn.

He says ‘kill’ very often. (click here for article)

‘So I ran straight down the wicket. I remember Mark Boucher batting; I almost killed him.

‘Morne almost killed a couple in the nets today. I’m glad he’s in my team.

Good, aggressive guy, this guy, Steyn. In a nice, Allan Donald way. He will peter out by 30, when the speed will give way, and as a not-towering guy, he will never get the loop and bounce. But till then, I hope he continues to put up a show.

Good times for quick bowling the world over.