During the course of the second Test between Sri Lanka and South Africa at the SSC, Colombo, Morne Morkel became only the sixth bowler from his country to have claimed over 200 wickets in Test cricket. At the end of the Colombo Test, he had taken 201 wickets at an average of 30.08 and a strike rate of 56.5. Strangely, he has only six five-wicket hauls to his name at an economy rate of 3.18. Also, Morkel is yet to claim 10 wickets in a match, which should motivate him on to greater things. The lanky medium-pacer's best figures in an innings are 6 for 23, and those in a match are 8 for 196. Here's a look at other South African bowlers in the 200 plus club.
Shaun Pollock: The South African legend holds the record for most Test wickets as far as his country is concerned. After 108 Tests, he finished with 421 wickets at a splendid average of 23.11 and strike rate of 58. During the course of his spectacular career, he took as many as 16 five-wicket hauls in an innings, apart from claiming ten wickets in a match on one occasion. Pollock's best figures in an innings were 7 for 87, and those in a match were 10 for 147. In addition, he maintained a wonderful strike rate of 2.39.
Makhaya Ntini: The former speedster is next on the list. Ntini played a total of 101 Tests and claimed 390 wickets at an average of 28.82 with 18 five-wicket hauls and four 10-wicket hauls. Ntini's best figures in an innings were 7 for 37 and those in a match were 13 for 132. Ntini had an economy rate of 3.23 during his career, and a strike rate of 53.4. He finished as one of South Africa's all-time great bowlers though he struggled during his last few Tests.
Dale Steyn: Thecurrentspearhead of the attack, Steyn has 375 wickets to his name in 74 Tests at an average of 22.82 with 23 five-wicket hauls, and five ten-wicket hauls. Steyn's best figures in an innings are 7 for 51 and those in a match are 11 for 60. The South African giant has a very good economy rate of 3.26 and an equally good strike rate of 41.8. He should go on to break Pollock's record in all probability.
Allan Donald: In 72 Tests, South Africa's first truly great fast bowler claimed 330 wickets at an average of 22.25 with 20 five-wicket hauls and three 10-wicket hauls. Donald’s best bowling performance in an innings was 8 for 71 and that in a match was 12 for 139. His economy rate during his stupendous career was 2.83, and his strike rate was exactly 47. Even today, few can match the credentials of Donald in Test cricket.
Jacques Kallis: South Africa's greatest all-rounder played a total of 165 Tests, and claimed 291 wickets while averaging 32.63 with five five-wicket hauls while never managing a ten-wicket match haul. Kallis' best figures in an innings were 6 for 54 and those in a match were 9 for 92. During his career, Kallis had an economy rate of 2.82 and a strike rate of 69.3. These figures might pale in comparison to the rest, but taken in consideration with the amount of runs he has scored, it makes his contribution gigantic.
--By A Cricket Analyst