England seamer James Anderson insists the continued absence of South Africa paceman Dale Steyn gives his side the upper hand as they bid for a series-clinching victory in the third Test in Johannesburg.
Steyn will miss England’s latest showdown with the Proteas, which starts tomorrow, with the shoulder injury which ruled him out of the second Test in Cape Town, while England’s main injury doubt Nick Compton has recovered from a stomach illness.
“It’s obviously a plus because he [Steyn] is the No1 bowler in the world, a world-class performer and any team with him in it is a stronger one. So for him not to be playing is a plus for us,” said Anderson.
The 33-year-old is the sole survivor from England’s victorious tour of South Africa in 2004-05, and insists the value of toppling the world’s No1-ranked Test side in their own backyard would be immeasurable.
“It would be massive for us, especially with the journey this team has gone on in a short space of time,” added Anderson. “To get a win out here, somewhere South Africa have dominated for a long period of time and a big reason why they are No1, it would be huge for us.”