Cape Town Blitz fast bowler Anrich Nortje has already started picking up information from his hero, Dale Steyn, even though the Proteas paceman only joined the squad in the last week.
The 25-year-old Nortje shared the new ball with Steyn in the Cape Town Blitz’ second Mzansi Super League (MSL) match in Durban against the Durban Heat on Sunday.
The Warriors speedster has enjoyed an impressive start to the MSL campaign, picking up five wickets in the first two games and bowling with some serious pace.
Asked about sharing a dressing room with one of the game’s great fast bowlers, Nortjie said: “It’s been unbelievable sharing a dressing room with Dale.
“He’s just as awesome off the field as he is on the field and it’s really been a highlight in my career to be playing with him.
“So far we’ve been focusing on game plans and plans to certain guys, which has helped me a lot. I think later in the tournament, I’ll try to do some skills with him and just try to improve one or two aspects of my game.”
Nortje showed his mettle against the Durban Heat when, after conceding 16 runs from 8 balls, he ripped through the Heat’s top order with three wickets in four balls – clean bowling Morne van Wyk, Sarel Erwee and Temba Bavuma.
He followed that up with the wicket of Proteas legend Hashim Amla to end on figures of 4/32 from his four overs.
Nortje added: “I’m very happy with my contributions on the field thus far, it’s been a great start for us and I’m really looking forward to taking the momentum into the next couple of game.”
He and Steyn can form a formidable opening bowling partnership, something Nortje is looking forward to if it plays out that way.
Nortje stated: “If given the new ball again with Steyn, building a good partnership between us could be crucial going forward. Good starts from a bowling perspective could mean that we can put teams under pressure early in their innings and maybe try restrict them as much as possible.”
The Cape Town Blitz’ next game in the Mzansi Super League is against Nelson Mandela Bay Giants at Newlands on Wednesday.
Above: Anrich Nortje celebrates the wicket of Hashim Amla of the Durban Heat during the Mzansi Super League match between Durban Heat and Cape Town Blitz at Sahara Stadium Kingsmead on November 18, 2018 in Durban, South Africa. (Photo by Anesh Debiky/Gallo Images)