• Faf staying ‘to help with transition period’

    South Africa’s Faf du Plessis would like to continue as Test captain, despite this month’s 3-0 Test series defeat by India.

    The Proteas were trounced in Visakhapatnam, Pune and Ranchi, heightening suggestion that Du Plessis’ tenure as Test captain is nearing an end.

    ‘How I see my journey unfolding with this team is to help with the transition period. This period is to try and make that process a bit smoother, identifying the next leaders, identifying the next captains, working with them, and then when that time is right, that time will be right,’ said Du Plessis.

    ‘That’s something we spoke about before that wasn’t necessarily the case before.’

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    The Proteas were without recent Test retirees Hashim Amla and Dale Steyn in India. Batsman AB de Villiers and fast bowler Morne Morkel’s Test careers have also ended.

    The squad featured three players uncapped at Test level – wicketkeeper Heinrich Klaasen, spinner Senuran Muthusamy and fast bowler Anrich Nortje – before the series started. A fourth, all-rounder George Linde, was added prior to the third and final Test.

    ‘I found the tour really tough. We have had a very mature Test team for a while, guys that have played 30, 40 and more Test matches. Now you look in the dressing room and its five, six, seven, eight, 10 Tests,’ added Du Plessis.

    ‘Obviously, someone like Dale was effective in the subcontinent because he has a similar skill set. He is a skiddy bowler off the pitch, hits the stumps, whereas if you are missing the stumps a lot or bouncing it over the stumps, it’s not as effective here.’

    The Proteas will host England for four Tests from late December. Before that, several will be involved in domestic cricket and the second edition of the Mzansi Super League.

    ‘Our next journey is to try and make sure we get a lot stronger as a cricketing team mentally. As you can see, a tour like this reveals that there is a lot of mental scars that can happen and then obviously it’s difficult to come out of the hole,’ concluded Du Plessis.

    Photo: BackPagePix

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