Dale Steyn announces retirement from all forms of cricket
Virender Sehwag calls him “fire”, Kevin Pietersen considers him the greatest fast bowler in all conditions. Dale Steyn, the man whose graceful, rhythmic run-up could culminate into an unplayable toe-crushing yorker or a deceitful swing, on Tuesday announced his retirement from all forms of cricket.
The South African pace great quoted a song from American rock band Counting Crows on his Twitter handle to let the world know of his decision.
“‘And it’s been a long December and there’s reason to believe. Maybe this year will be better than the last I can’t remember all the times I tried to tell myself to hold on to these moments as they pass,’” Steyn quoted from the song before adding: “It’s been 20 years of training, matches, travel, wins, losses, strapped feat, jet lag, joy, and brotherhood. There are too many memories to tell. To many faces to thank. So I left it to the experts to sum up, my favourite band, the Counting Crows.”
As far as his emotions are concerned, Steyn summed it up saying: “Today, I officially retire from the game I love the most. Bitter sweet but grateful. Thank you to everyone, from family to teammates, journalists to fans, it’s been an incredible journey together.”
Steyn, 38, is South Africa’s highest Test wicket-taker with 439 strikes in 93 games. In his 17-year-long career, the right-arm fast bowler also owns 260 wickets in the game’s white-ball formats. He had quit Test cricket two years ago but could play only three T20Is thereafter. His last international match was in March 2020, when he turned out for the Proteas in a T20I against Australia.
Ever since a career-threatening shoulder issue during South Africa’s tour of Australia in November 2016, Steyn had had constant run-ins with injuries that hampered with his on-field performance.
He hoped to play in the T20 World Cup last year, but then the tournament was postponed owing to the Covid-19 pandemic. He, however, turned out in T20 franchise leagues from time to time, including in the Pakistan Super League in March this year.
Steyn’s stature as one of the best practitioners of fast bowling could be well understood from the reactions that flowed in after his retirement announcement.
James Anderson, one of the greatest pacers in modern cricket himself, tweeted “The Best” referring to Steyn.
Pat Cummins from Australia said: “Congrats on a remarkable career. Set the standard for fast bowlers world round to follow for 20 years. No better competitor to watch in full flight, enjoy retirement mate!All time great.”
““Bitter sweet” is the right way to sum up a great fast bowler’s career,@DaleSteyn62 . We have witnessed a fierce bowler in you, whose bowling feats will inspire the future generations. Congratulations on a wonderful career buddy and best wishes for whatever you do in future,” the legendary Wasim Akram wrote on Twitter.
“Bitter sweet” is the right way to sum up a great fast bowler’s career,@DaleSteyn62 . We have witnessed a fierce bowler in you, whose bowling feats will inspire the future generations. Congratulations on a wonderful career buddy and best wishes for whatever you do in future.— Wasim Akram (@wasimakramlive) August 31, 2021