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Dale Steyn far better than Mitchell Johnson: Waqar Younis

Dale Steyn © Getty Images
Waqar Younis praised Dale Steyn (above) by saying that he can do well on any wicket © Getty Images

Kolkata: Mar 15, 2014

Pakistani fast-bowling legend Waqar Younis has said that the South African pacer Dale Steyn is one of the best in the world he has seen in past two to three decades.

“I’ve regarded him as one of the best in the world for last 20-30 years. Even in South Africa, I don’t think they have produced anybody like Steyn in the past. For me Steyn is definitely the number one bowler,” the former skipper said, rating him ahead of Allan Donald.

Asked to compare Steyn with Australia’s in-form pacer Mitchell Johnson, Waqar said: “It’s difficult to answer but I think both are fine bowlers. Mitchell [Johnson] has just found his rhythm in the last few months. Steyn has been outstanding for say last 10 years.

“I don’t think you can compare them. I think Steyn is far better. At the moment of course Mitchell [Johnson] has got his rhythm going for him,” Waqar said on the sidelines of the launch of Cricket Association of Bengal’s Vision 2020 programme to groom youngsters.

Waqar will be in charge of the pace camp, while Sri Lankan spin wizard Muttiah Muralitharan will help the spinners in a pool of youngsters in a three-year contract.

Waqar incidentally was promised an important role in the PCB set up but the board named Moin Khan as the coach for the Asia Cup and the upcoming ICC World T20 2014.

But the legendary bowler tried to play down the issue.

“PCB [Pakistan Cricket Board] has not promised anything. I’ve come here with an open mind. I’m here to give my best. Hopefully, today afternoon I’ll see some players,” said Waqar.

“As far as PCB is concerned nothing has been promised, I don’t think one should worry about that.”

Stating that fast bowling is all about attitude and does depend on the nature of the pitches, Waqar said, “If you see overall, the tracks in the sub-continent are slow. We don’t have fast tracks in this part of the world. But we have produced some good fast bowlers in the past, especially Pakistan.

“We have been lucky to have some good fast bowlers. Fast bowling is not only about the pitches, it’s about the attitude. It’s about how hungry you’re.

“We will look for the boys who’re hungry, how far they want to go, how much they want to put in. Fast bowling is not an easy art. It takes a lot out of you. Attitude is more important, more than anything else. Pitch does not matter.”

Waqar insisted that he always felt that he could do well on any wicket.

“If you look at my entire career, I’ve hardly looked at the pitch. I believed I could do well on any sort of track.

That mindset is the key more than anything else. If you look at Pakistan, Sri Lanka and India, we are doing well in the world cricket. Tracks really don’t matter much,” he said.

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