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October 9, 2019

Steyn signs with Melbourne Stars for six BBL games


October 9, 2019

MELBOURNE: Melbourne Stars have signed South Africa fast bowler Dale Steyn for a six-game stint at the start of the upcoming Big Bash League season.

Steyn had long been on the Stars wishlist and he joins fellow South Africans AB de Villiers and Chris Morris in the BBL, after de Villiers signed with the Brisbane Heat and Morris with the Sydney Thunder. Steyn joins Nepal legspinner Sandeep Lamichhane as the Stars’ second overseas signing.

The paceman, South Africa’s most successful in Tests, retired from the longest format in August following a sequence of injuries, bringing the curtain down on a great career.

However, he is still contracted with Cricket South Africa and available for ODI and T20I selection although he was left out of South Africa’s recent T20I tour to India with the selectors claiming he was not medically ready, even though Steyn believed he was fit.

The Stars got in contact with him shortly after he announced his Test retirement and, following a short period of negotiation, CSA cleared him to play the first six games of the BBL although Steyn suggested the door remained open for an extension if he doesn’t get selected for the England limited-overs series, which starts in early February. “It’s something that I’ve wanted to do for a while, play Big Bash,” Steyn said.

“Unfortunately representing the Proteas for the bulk of my career over Christmas time we’ve always got Test matches on, the Boxing Day and New Year’s Test matches. So I haven’t been available. But since retiring from Test cricket, it’s opened up a little window for me while the Proteas play red-ball cricket.”

Steyn hasn’t played since he injured his shoulder in the IPL in April and he was ruled out of the World Cup shortly after it began. He is currently preparing to play for Cape Town Blitz in the Mzansi Super League, which begins in November. —Agencies

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