Proteas paceman Dale Steyn is set to tour England with South Africa A in June as he continues his recovery towards full fitness following shoulder surgery.
Steyn suffered a broken bone in his right shoulder during the first Test against Australia in Perth last November, meaning the right-arm quick is approaching the initial prognosis of six months on the sidelines.
If the 33-year-old comes through the 'A' tour – which includes three 50-over matches and a four-day match – unscathed, he could well be in a position to make his Test return for the series opener against England at Lord's on July 6.
"My rehab is going well," Steyn told SuperSport. "I have done beep training for a month or so.
"I am running fit (and) planning to go on South Africa A trip in June (to England)."
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Steyn is currently sitting equal 10th on the all-time Test wicket-takers list, with 417, and is just four short of equalling Shaun Pollock's South African record.
The fiery paceman's strike-rate of 41.4 is the best of any bowler to have taken 200-plus Test wickets, and his return would likely see him renew a fearsome new-ball combination with youngster Kagiso Rabada.
The timing of Steyn's potential return is convenient for South Africa; Kyle Abbott has joined County Championship club Hampshire under the Kolpak ruling and will not play for his country again, while Vernon Philander's northern summer has already been interrupted by injury, ruled out for two-three weeks of County Championship action with Sussex due to a groin strain.
Asked if he would be able to return to full pace, Steyn was optimistic, adding he was relishing the prospect of getting the English Duke ball back in his hands.
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"Hopefully, I feel good," he said. "The shoulder rehabilitation has been good. It feels stronger every week.
"The Duke ball swings. It gives me a chance.
"I want to play cricket for South Africa. I am nearly ready."
Steyn has played five Tests in England, taking 23 wickets at 31.65.