Steyn has SA Test wickets record in his sights

PREMIUM

Dale Steyn hopes to become South Africa’s all-time leading Test wicket taker when the Proteas take on Pakistan in the Boxing Day Test match at SuperSport Park in Centurion.
Steyn joined Shaun Pollock as the country’s joint highest wicket taker with 421 scalps when he claimed the wicket 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 set to be 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 fellow Cobras member 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 ODI’s and eight T20I’s, but has never played a Test for his country.
Hamza will come into the match with some confidence after scoring an unbeaten 74 for the Cobras in their win against the Warriors in Port Elizabeth last weekend, while Paterson also performed well, picking up four wickets in two innings.
Out-of-form Protea Hashim Amla also got in some good batting 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 had a good stint over the weekend, scoring 84 for the Titans in their win over the Knights. And despite limited overs in the Dolphins’ win 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 six-wicket 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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