Dale Steyn has been very influential, says Lungi Ngidi

Having fully recovered from injury, South Africa speedster Lungi Ngidi is keen to get into the groove before he joins the senior Test team to take on India.

Lungi Ngidi during the opening day of the unofficial Test against India A at Mysuru on Tuesday.   -  G.P. Sampath Kumar

Mid way through South Africa’s stuttering ICC ODI World Cup campaign, fast bowler Lungi Ngidi was ruled out due to a hamstring injury.

Ngidi could only watch from the sidelines as his side struggled in the mega event, finishing with just three wins in nine matches.

The strapping pacer is now back in action, turning out for the touring South Africa A. In the first unofficial Test against India A – his first competitive match since the injury layoff – Ngidi bowled well to pick up five wickets.

READ: India A rides on Shubman Gill, Karun Nair fifties

The 23-year-old is keen to get into the groove before he joins the senior Test team to take on India.

“The hamstring injury was caused maybe because I was trying to bowl too fast. Missing the latter half of the World Cup was disappointing, but injuries are a part of life. I went straight to my recovery routine, and now I’m feeling very fit. I’ve done a lot of training to recover from the injury. I’m happy with the way I’m bowling, and I want to keep the rhythm going,” Ngidi said on Tuesday.

Ngidi can count on fellow South African speedster Dale Steyn for support and inspiration. “Steyn has the perfect blue print for a fast bowler. Taking 400 Test wickets is something all of us aspire to achieve. He has been very influential; he gives us a lot of good advise. Having him around is great for the team,” he said.

A year ago, Ngidi experienced a personal tragedy when his father Jerome passed away.

“My father was my biggest supporter; that spot has been taken by my mum now. His demise was unfortunate and sudden.

"He wanted to see me play for South Africa and in the IPL - I'm happy that he got to see both. Life, death – it happens. I know he’s watching me from above, so I make him proud,” Ngidi said.

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