South African pace legend Dale Steyn on Saturday picked up five pacers he thinks will cause a massive impact in the ICC Cricket World Cup 2023 in India, which will start from October five onwards. Steyn’s first pick was India pacer Mohammed Siraj. 

“He swings the ball upfront, knocks over big batters. He is a key player for India,” said Steyn describing Siraj as quoted by an ICC video. (Cricket World Cup 2023: Best Bowling Figures In Tournament History – In Pics)

Siraj is currently the number one-ranked ODI bowler. With 30 wickets in 14 matches this year, he is one of the most lethal bowlers out now. His spell of 6/21 against Sri Lanka in the final of the Asia Cup this year bundled them out for just 50 and helped India secure its eighth title.

Steyn’s second pick was his compatriot Kagiso Rabada, who he described as one of his favourites to watch. (Watch: Fans Chant Virat Kohli’s Name Despite Heavy Rain In Guwahati During India vs England Cricket World Cup 2023 Warm-Up Match)

“One of my favourites to watch, is a South Africa, has big bounce, lot of pace and is familiar with Indian conditions,” said Steyn describing the bowler. 

Rabada has taken 144 wickets in 92 ODIs, with the best figures of 6/16. This year in five matches, he has taken nine wickets with the best figures of 3/41. 

Pakistan pace sensation Shaheen Shah Afridi was Steyn’s next pick. Shaheen has 24 wickets in 12 ODIs this year with the best figures of 4/35. His ability to pick up wickets in twos and threes in powerplay is extremely crucial for Pakistan’s chances in the World Cup. 

Steyn’s next pick was New Zealand speedster Trent Boult, who made a return to international cricket this year after giving up on his central contract with the Kiwis last year. The SA pace legend picked Boult to be the leading wicket-taker of the tournament. 

“Swings the ball upfront for NZ, big wicket-taker. I think he will be the leading wicket-taker (in WC),” Steyn said about Boult. 

With 39 wickets in 19 matches across two WCs, Boult is NZ’s most successful bowler in World Cup history. This year, he has picked up 10 wickets in five ODIs with best figures of 5/51. He often strikes in powerplay overs to put pressure on middle-order batters. Lastly, England’s Mark Wood was Steyn’s pick. 

“This man has extreme pace. He will take a lot of wickets for England in the WC. His fear factor is pace alone,” said Steyn describing the bowler. 

Wood has a total of 71 wickets in 59 ODIs, with the best figures of 4/33. The bowler touches the 150 kmph mark often and his lethal pace will be hard for players to handle in the tournament.

Read More