South African pacers Dale Steyn and Kagiso Rabada will be fit for World Cup 2019 and there are no real issues relating to their fitness that will have an impact on their chances for the tournament. South Africa’s head coach Ottis Gibson confirmed the news yesterday and said that both the pacers are on track.
“There was an issue with KG [Rabada] and there was an issue with Dale, but we feel that those guys are on track. There’s nothing that people should be alarmed about. They’re going to both make full recoveries and be able to take their place at the World Cup,” he said.
Both the pacers were dealing with fitness issues after their IPL stints. Dale Steyn had landed in India a few weeks after the commencement of the league and after just playing two matches for RCB, he suffered a shoulder issue that ruled him out of IPL.
Keeping Steyn’s shoulder issues in mind, there were thoughts that this could have an impact on his World Cup chances but he seems to be fit.
On the other hand, Rabad suffered a back issue after leading Delhi Capitals’ pace attack for the majority of the season. Rabada, the highest wicket-taker for Delhi Capitals, missed a game against Chennai Super Kings due to back issue and was then called back by Cricket South Africa as a precautionary measure.
Both Rabada and Steyn are vital cogs in South Africa’s pace attack and will have to share the responsibility in the World Cup 2019. Lungi Ngidi is another pacer in the squad while Andile Phehlukwayo and Chris Morris are two pace bowling all-rounders.
South Africa have kicked off their preparations for the tournament as the members of the team met for the first time since the home series against Sri Lanka. Few of the South African players – Faf du Plessis, Imran Tahir, Quinton de Kock – landed in the country after IPL final while Aiden Markram was playing county cricket in England.
The members of the team will now train under Ottis Gibson for few days before they fly to England on May 19. South Africa play two practice matches on May 24 and 26 against Sri Lanka and West Indies respectively.
The Faf du Plessis-led side will face Virat Kohli and co in their third match of the tournament on June 5. It will be the first match for India in World Cup 2019.