Cape Town - Dale Steyn has been ruled out of bowling in the first Test against India with tissue damage to his heel, and he is likely to miss the entire Indian series.
Steyn picked up the injury in his 18th over of the innings and the final over before tea when he landed awkwardly in a foot-hole.
He immediately felt the discomfort, knew that something was wrong and left the field.
Steyn was taken for scans, and the news from Proteas team manager Dr. Mohammed Moosajee after the day’s play was not good.
He confirmed that Steyn would not bowl again in Cape Town, and with the recovery time for this injury expected to be 4-6 weeks, it is unlikely that he will feature again in the series.
The 34-year-old was playing in his first Test since November 2016 when he suffered a career-threatening shoulder injury against Australia.
The road to recovery from that setback was a long one for Steyn, and many felt that he had reached the end of the road in international cricket.
His two wickets in this Test take him to 419 scalps overall, and he needs just three more to overtake Shaun Pollock as the country's all-time leading wicket-taker in the format.
"During Dale's 18th over in his delivery stride he unfortunately landed awkwardly in the foot-holes, and this caused a significant strain to the foot leading to tissue damage on the under-side of the foot," Moosajee explained.
"The recovery period for this could be anything from 4-6 weeks, which means he could be out for the series."
Moosajee added that Steyn would visit one of the leading ankle surgeons in the country on Sunday for further opinion.
"What is important to note is that this injury was freakish because of how his foot landed and is no way related to his bowling loads or not being match ready," Moosajee added.
"Understandable, he was disappointed. But knowing Dale like we know him and you know him, he understands that he is going to try his best to recover as quickly as he can because he wants to be out there.
"You could see how much he was enjoying himself out there."
Moosajee said that a decision on whether or not Steyn would bat, if needed, had not been made yet, but at this stage he was unable to run.