Dale Steyn Wants To Play The Mind Games With Virat Kohli To Get The Better Of Him
Dale Steyn
Dale Steyn
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Dale Steyn Wants To Play The Mind Games With Virat Kohli To Get The Better Of Him

Dale Steyn revealed his plan of bowling to India captain Virat Kohli. The battle between Dale Steyn and Virat Kohli is a much-awaited contest we have seen a few times in the recent past, but it was during a time when Dale Steyn was at the peak of his bowling prowess while Virat Kohli was a young and promising youngster on the fast track to becoming world’s best batsman.

Today, things have changed. Dale Steyn is on the final leg of his career having already retired from Test cricket, while Virat Kohli has established himself as one of the best batsmen of the modern era.

The sight of South African pacer Dale Steyn in his peak bowling to Virat Kohli today would have made for fascinating viewing. Having said that, if it were to happen, or if Dale Steyn is to still play a few more matches for his side South Africa and come across Virat Kohli in an ODI or T20I, it would be entertaining to watch for the spectators. Well, the South Africa fast bowler has the answer as he revealed his plan of bowling to India captain Virat Kohli.

“You’ve got to play the mind games with Virat. I would look at putting somebody in at short leg. I would let him know that I’m going to come at him, come at his body, want to come quickly at him. And I’d want him to try and pull because I feel like that’s his B game,” Steyn told Sanjay Manjrekar on ESPNCricinfo ahead of the start of the World Test Championship final in Southampton.

Dale Steyn with Virat Kohli, Royal Challengers Bangalore in IPL
Dale Steyn with Virat Kohli, Royal Challengers Bangalore in IPL (BCCI Photo)
 “Even though he does it really well, I’d want him to think that’s where I’m going to bowl, and then get it up there because I like to swing the ball, I like to move the ball. Look for those three modes of dismissals, LBW, bowled and the caught behind.”
Dale Steyn had retired from Test cricket after taking 439 scalps from 93 Tests averaging 22.95. He also has 196 ODI scalps and 64 T20I scalps besides his name. He had also taken 97 scalps from 95 IPL matches playing many games for Royal Challengers Bangalore besides skipper Virat Kohli. He has played 33 matches for RCB taking 32 scalps.

Dale Steyn Would Want Virat Kohli To Think He Will Bowl Short But He’ll Probably Bowl 6 Full Balls To Him

Dale Steyn explained his plan further, highlighting how he would aim to cash in on the initial uncertainty of the batsman as he will try to find his feet initially.  The South Africa fast bowler stressed the need to make the batsman believe that he’s being set up for a short ball while the reality would be something totally different.

Dale Steyn
Dale Steyn Photograph: Christiaan Kotze/AFP/Getty Images

“I’ll probably try to get him to nick every single ball but I’ll be telling him, ‘it’s coming… I’m going to hit you in the head you know’. I’m not going to swear at him but let him know that that short leg is in business.”

Dale Steyn did retire from Test cricket in August 2019, finishing his career in the longest format with 439 wickets at an outstanding average of 22.95. However, he has continued to play for the Proteas in the T20I format; his most recent international appearance came in a T20I against Australia in February 2020.