South Africa's legendary fast bowler Dale Steyn is celebrating his 37th birthday today. Widely regarded as one of the greatest fast bowlers in modern-day cricket, Steyn was named the Test cricketer of the year in 2008, one of the Wisden Cricketers of the Year in 2013 and the Wisden Leading Cricketer of the Year for the same year.
At the peak of his career, Steyn dominated the no.1 spot in the Test rankings for a record 263 weeks. The South African pacer is the leading wicket-taker from the country in the longest format of the game, with 439 wickets in 93 matches. He is the fifth-highest wicket-taker in the world among the fast bowlers, and eighth-highest overall.
With 196 ODI wickets in 125 games and 64 T20I dismissals to his name in 47 matches, Steyn has taken a total of 699 international wickets in his career so far. He announced his retirement from the longest format of the game in 2019 after missing a large part of South Africa's red-ball season due to injuries.
Dale Steyn is one of the few bowlers who have taken five-wicket hauls in Australia, India, England, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Zimbabwe, in addition to his home country. His 26 five-wicket hauls in Tests are the most by a South African, and sixth-highest by a pacer. (ALSO READ: Phehlukwayo targets 100 Tests for South Africa)
Steyn has been lethal against India - especially in the longest format of the game. One of his most dominant performances against India came during the 2010 Test in Nagpur, where he ripped apart a star-studded Indian batting line-up. Steyn took seven wickets in the first innings, conceding 51 runs. This also remains his best career figure in Test cricket. He also took three wickets in the second innings of the same Test as South Africa registered an innings victory over the home side.
As Steyn turns 37, the cricket fraternity and fans are taking to Twitter to wish the South African pacer:
He’s fast! He’s smart! He’s lethal! One of the best pace bowlers of this generation, our very own Dale Steyn, turns 3️⃣7️⃣ today! ⚡️— Royal Challengers Bangalore (@RCBTweets) June 27, 2020
Here’s wishing you a very Happy Birthday @DaleSteyn62! 🎂
Can’t wait to see you dislodge a few more stumps! 😉#PlayBold pic.twitter.com/5ictbFfUpH
— SunRisers Hyderabad (@SunRisers) June 27, 2020
🇿🇦 265 international appearances— ICC (@ICC) June 27, 2020
☝️ 699 wickets
🔝 An unprecedented 263 weeks spent atop @MRFWorldwide ICC Test Bowling Rankings 🤯
An all-time great 🙌
Happy birthday, Dale Steyn! pic.twitter.com/9D7dsmM8Y9
Dale Steyn is the only fast bowler who has taken five-wicket haul against 9 test playing nation— Broken Cricket (@BrokenCricket) June 27, 2020
Happy Birthday Champ!
Dale Steyn is so good everyone wants to give him a nickname: Phalaborwa Express, Steyn Gun, Steyn Remover... the list goes on.— C. S. Chiwanza (@CSChiwanza) June 27, 2020
What everyone agrees on is he is The GOAT 🐐.
Happy birthday Dale Steyn. pic.twitter.com/9arjQpbGlc