ICC Champions Trophy: South Africa's Dale Steyn set for return in West Indies clash
Last Updated: 13/06/13 6:57pm
Dale Steyn: Recovered from a side strain and should be fit for the semi-final decider
South Africa fast bowler Dale Steyn is in line to return for their crucial clash with the West Indies in Cardiff on Friday.
The 29-year-old has yet to feature in the Champions Trophy due to a side strain but his captain AB de Villiers confirmed he will be ready play in the match that will determine which of the two sides make the semi-finals.
"He bowled at a hundred per cent intensity yesterday (Wednesday), and it was sort of the first part of his fitness assessment and today he's doing a bit more," said de Villiers.
"He's 99.9% per cent ready, but we're just going to make sure this afternoon that he'll be ready to go. We'll make the final call this afternoon, but it's looking good."
The West Indies haven't beaten South Africa in an ODI since 2006 but Windies skipper Dwayne Bravo thinks the Proteas' reputation as "chokers" puts extra pressure on Gary Kirsten's side.
"I think in tournaments, it doesn't really matter whether you in previous games against opposition or not," he said.
"I think the South Africans will feel the pressure also. They know if they lose, they are going back home. They have a tag of being chokers that do not do well in big tournaments, so that would be added pressure on them."
"For us, we're going to enjoy the occasion and forget about what happens in previous games," he added. "It's a tournament. It's a knockout game. We've been in this situation before and do well and go beyond. So, no pressure is on us."
With rain forecast, World Twenty20 champions West Indies would seem to be given the edge if the match is shortened, although the South Africans would progress courtesy of a superior net run-rate should conditions prevent a result.
"Whether we play a shortened game or a normal game, it's all about focus and team intensity off the field," De Villiers commented.
"No matter what happens, the rain is out of our control, so we'll focus on good cricket whether it's a 20-over game or a 50-over game.
"We still rate ourselves as a serious cricket team in whatever format we play and however many overs we play in."