South Africa were dealt a huge blow when their premier fast bowler Dale Steyn was ruled out of the ongoing World Cup owing to the shoulder injury. While captain Faf du Plessis still wants his side to be focused for the clash against India, Virat Kohli has said that he was 'gutted' to hear about the South Africa speedster's injury and wished him a speedy recovery.
"I'm really feeling bad for Dale because he looked really happy. He was bowling really well and then suddenly, we find out that he's not going to be able to continue. So, I feel bad for him because he's been a friend for a long time and he's a very motivated guy," Kohli told reporters.
The Indian captain also said that he understood the frustration faced by Steyn, more so because the speedster was really chuffed about making a comeback and playing for South Africa at the World Cup.
'I can understand his frustration'
"He's been very happy to come back and play for South Africa. He has been doing really well and he has that hunger and passion in him still. Those niggles and injuries are not going his way and I can understand his frustration about that," Kohli added ahead of India's clash against South Africa.
Dale Steyn played under Kohli in the IPL this season and made an immediate impact before he was ruled out with the same shoulder injury. The Indian captain, thus, said that he could feel what the fast bowler was going through and also wished him a speedy recovery.
"I wish him a speedy recovery, but of what I saw of him he was looking in a great mental space. He was very happy. He was enjoying his cricket, bowling really well, getting along with everyone so I can understand he must be feeling gutted," Kohli added.
However, South African captain Faf du Plessis blamed the IPL for this injury as he said that had Steyn not played in the IPL, he could well have been fit for this tournament.
"Unfortunately, it happened there in the IPL in those two games that he played there. If he didn't get picked up to go to the IPL, who knows where Dale would have been right now," du Plessis said.