South African quicks impress in Bangladesh
Thursday, 28 February 2008

Agence France-Presse . Dhaka

The new generation of South African quicks look all set to establish themselves among the world's best after their impressive show in unhelpful conditions here.

The fastest bowler of the side Dale Steyn and comeback man Morne Morkel have a tough job of slipping into the shoes of their illustrious countrymen Allan Donald and Shaun Pollock.

But both Steyn, 24, and Morkel, 23, are unlikely to disappoint in the days to come despite the standards set by Donald, nicknamed 'white lightening' for his sheer pace, and the ever reliable Pollock.

Steyn ripped through the Bangladesh top-order in the second innings in the first Test that South Africa won here by five wickets on Monday while Morkel took the honours in the first with figures of 5-50.

Their effort was all the more remarkable because the wicket was offering little assistance to the bowlers unlike the ones at home where the pace and bounce make the toil easier for the speedsters. The performance of the duo was not lost on opposition coach Jamie Siddon who was effusive in his praise of the South African bowling.

'The South African bowling made all the difference. I think Dale Steyn is already the best opening bowler in the world,' Siddons said after the game on Monday.

'He ripped us apart in the second innings with 150 kmh outswingers or inswingers to the left-handers. 'When your batsmen are out of confidence and having to play against Dale Steyn or Morne Morkel, that is a tough job. The pressure they put is too much for our batsmen at the moment.

Their bowlers are just too good for our batsmen.' Siddons said his bamboozled players were unable to tackle that sort of pace as they simply did not have such bowlers to practice against. 'We don't have a 150 kmh outswing bowler for the batsmen to practise against. They go from playing for their clubs in the National League to trying to take on the best fast bowler in the world. 'Steyn kept striking in the first few overs and we never recovered.

We spent the Test match trying to recover all the time,' the Aussie said. Steyn, who has taken 98 wickets from 19 Tests with two 10-wicket hauls, will have to pass a sterner test when he most likely tours India for a three-match series starting next month after having missed out on the previous tour.

As for Morkel, it might still be early days to hail the bowler as he has only played two Tests so far but his potential and promise were there for everyone to see in the Bangladesh Test. Morkel also earned praise in the past from Donald for his ability to extract bounce and bowl genuinely fast after observing him during a fast bowling camp back home.

With Andre Nel and Makhaya Nitni completing the fast-bowling quartet, and not to forget a certain magician that is Jacques Kallis, South African bowling seems to be in safe hands.

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