South Africa have been dealt a massive blow as their main pacer Dale Steyn has been ruled out of the opening fixture of ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 World Cup against England at the Kennington Oval. Proteas head coach Ottis Gibson, on Tuesday confirmed the news while addressing the media.
Dale Steyn is yet to make complete recovery from the injury which he picked on the shoulder during the Indian Premier League. This forced him to return home earlier this month.
The 35-year-old bowler is most likely to miss Sunday’s game against Bangladesh at the same venue. According to Gibson, Steyn is likely to make a comeback against India at the Rose Bowl in Southampton.
“He’s not quite ready yet. He’s not far away … but not quite yet,” Gibson said.
“We think with a six-week tournament, there is no real need to force the issue.
“We know that he is close and he’s getting closer every day. We’ll give him as much time as we can to get him ready,” he said.
Dwaine Pretorius or Chris Morris might fill Dale Steyn’s shoes in the opening two fixtures of the showpiece event.