Newsfile, April 25 April 25, 2013

Steyn among top three quicks of all time - Waqar

A round-up of IPL news from April 25, 2013
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Waqar Younis, the former Pakistan fast bowler who is working with Sunrisers Hyderabad this season, is a "big fan" of South Africa's Dale Steyn. Sunrisers have been on a roll so far in IPL 2013, sitting third on the points table seven games in, and Steyn has played a central role in getting them there with eight wickets at 19.00 and an economy rate of 5.46. "Not only me but everyone in the cricket world loves Steyn for the way he plays the game. That's not only because of his bowling but other things that he brings to the table," Waqar told the IPL website on the eve of Sunrisers' game against Chennai Super Kings. "He likes to talk. He's amazing when he talks to the coaches and youngsters alike. He participates and shows interest in all the team matters. That's one reason why the team is doing so well." Steyn has the potential, Waqar said, to be the greatest quick in the game ever: "There have been some seriously great bowlers in the last four-five decades that I can remember. We've had Imran Khan, Kapil Dev, Dennis Lillee, Glenn McGrath, Wasim Akram, Michael Holding and so many big names. But Dale Steyn is definitely in the top three for me. And if he keeps going like this for the next two-three seasons, he'll hit the top. Not many bowlers have swung the ball at his pace and have had his fitness. He's an amazing athlete."

Vijay still a part of CSK's plans - Fleming
Chennai Super Kings are yet to solve their opening issues in IPL 2013, with M Vijay continuing to struggle at the top. In seven innings, he has 104 runs at 17.33. For now, though, coach Stephen Fleming said the team was backing Vijay to deliver. "He has not been firing for us, true. If you look back, at a similar stage last year we dropped him and he came back stronger," Fleming said. "But this year he is doing all the right things. I am still backing him because when he clicks, he is really good."

Tendulkar's 'tense' birthday bash
On Wednesday Sachin Tendulkar closed 40, and had to put up with much hype surrounding the occasion. In the morning, at a 'cake-cutting ceremony', Tendulkar spoke of his nervousness and gratitude he felt on the day. "[I have] never been so tense actually while cutting a cake," Tendulkar was quoted as saying - with a laugh - by PTI. "While walking to get here, I met Anil Kumble along the way. He wished me happy birthday and told me, 'Don't worry, 40 is just a number.' That was sort of relieving.

"Let me take this opportunity to thank all the people in India and all across the world who are well-wishers of mine. They have supported me and showered their unconditional love on me over the last 23 years. It has been my strength. I thought this was the best opportunity to come here and thank each and every one of them."

Nikita Bastian is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • McGorium on April 28, 2013, 20:27 GMT

    @riz309: Putting Saeed Anwar in the same list as Haynes, Greenidge, et al. is an insult to the them. Saeed Anwar was a flat track bully who'd pulverize bowlers on flat subcontinent wickets (especially against ones of Indian extraction), but you just have to look at his overseas record to see how poor he really was. Saeed Anwar wasn't even the best batsman in his own team (that's Inzy), never mind being comparable to these all-time greats. Or did you mean ODI's? Even there, I rate Inzy better than Anwar, though the delta is lesser because of flatter tracks. Either ways, Anwar isn't a patch on Gilchrist, Haynes, Greenidge, or Hayden. Hell, I'd rate Sehwag higher than Anwar.

  • ansram on April 27, 2013, 15:58 GMT

    @Blue Boss - Kapil Dev averages 26 odd in 65 matches played on dead or spin friendly tracks of India. If he is not a great bowler I do not know who else is great. Kapildev is much superior to many bowlers with better averages than him who bowled under very helpful pace bowling conditions in England, Australia, South Africa, New Zealand etc. The big test of a fast bowler is to be able to get wickets in India and Kapil dev has proved that he is up there with the best.

  • riz309 on April 27, 2013, 3:22 GMT

    Styen was lucky never had to put up with aggressive opners like Gilchcrist, S.Anwar,D.Hynes,G.Greenidge,or even Lara, S.Waugh these opners were capable of taking care of any genuine fast bowler and put some dent into any bowler's ave.

  • manishwa on April 26, 2013, 14:14 GMT

    I think the key here is to pick the captain's delight - who do I toss the ball to? Probably a good indicator would be the bowling strike rate - the number of balls per wicket. And Steyn is at the top at the moment - 41.1, though he still has a couple of years to go. Waqar probably had this stats in mind, because he himself (43.4) and M. Marshall (43.6) have one of the best strike rates.

    However, I would sneak in one other name - Sydney Barnes, who got 189 wickets at a SR of 41.6 and incredible average of 16. He is part of many lists of all time great bowlers.

    My top list of 4 all time top bowlers would be, in no particular order - Marshall, Steyn, Barnes and Waqar

  • Soso_killer on April 26, 2013, 11:15 GMT

    Easilly in the top 5 of the greatest bowlers of all time.

  • priceless1 on April 26, 2013, 8:38 GMT

    Yesterday's game showed all of us where Steyn stands at limited over games ( in fact he had been showing it for long time in IPL remember last year when the game was in balance with RCB then AB took Steyn to the cleaners and won the game easily the end )

  • Harmony111 on April 26, 2013, 8:06 GMT

    Stark62: I sort of agree with Greatest_Game here. If anything then we should be diluting the records of several batsmen who have scored buckets of runs in the last decade as the world has suffered from a lack of quality fast men. Most of the good ones retired around 2002 and very few came up to take that space. Barring Steyn and Lee I honestly can't recall anyone else worthy of being mentioned here. Yes there were a few who did well for a while but that is insufficient. I'd rather say that Sanga, Mahela, Kallis and to some extent Cook are the ones who have prospered and made their records better than they ought to be as they don't have to face good bowlers. Kallis in particular doesn't have to face the ONE TOP bowler of the times - Styen (& Morkel & Philander too).

    Till I had seen Steyn bowl, I used to think he was hype but once I had seen him bowl I was mesmerized. When in flow each of his ball is capable of taking a wicket.

  • dummy4fb on April 26, 2013, 6:56 GMT

    Kapil Dev ? Waqae, why do you have to mention Kapil Dev in the list of great bowlers. Oh I just remember that he was speaking to IPL website :D. But then why did Waqar missed Srinath, Prasad, Mohanty, Agarkar, Munaf Patel, Nehra and Zaheer Khan. :O

  • Greatest_Game on April 26, 2013, 6:33 GMT

    @ Stark62 wrote "Tendulkar and Ponting were reaching their end, same can be said for Laxman and Dravid."

    Really?

    Steyn's test debut was in 2004, but in 2006 his international career took off.

    India toured SA in 2006 Sewag, Jaffer, Dravid (Captain,) Tendulkar, Laxman, Dhoni were all in that team. Steyn bowled to them. Laxman retired 18 Aug, 2012. Dravid retired 9 March 2012. Tendulakr is still playing, Sehwag is still trying to play. Ricky Ponting announced his retirement on 29 December 2012. Mahela Jayawardene is still playing, Kumar Sangakkara is still playing, Shiv Chanderpaul is still playing. These are all amongst the top scoring batsmen of all time, & Steyn bowled to all of them, & is still bowling to some. Pietersen, Cook, Clarke, Gayle, Younis Khan are all in the top 50, and making their way up. They'll have to do so facing Steyn.

    I challenge you to tell any of them that they were reaching their end in 2006!

  • BillyCC on April 26, 2013, 6:26 GMT

    Steyn's all right, he's top 15 and improving. Top 3 is probably a stretch but he might get there. He'll need to get his average down about 2 extra runs and keep that strike rate low. The interesting comparison will be against Philander in the coming years. Currently, Philander averages heaps less and has a better strike rate, but it's early days for him.