Clearing the way for the appointment of Quinton de Kock as the South African captain in all the three formats of the game, swashbuckling batsman Faf du Plessis has stepped down as the skipper of both Test and T20I teams with immediate effect.
Announcing the news, the 35-year-old cited that he has decided to take a step back from the leadership role in order to allow the emergence of the next generation of skippers within the team under the new stewardship of de Kock.
Du Plessis said that he made the ‘tough’ decision in the best interests of the South African team, adding that he would remain fully committed to support De Kock, head coach Mark Boucher and his teammates in rebuilding as a group.
When I took over the leadership, I did so with the commitment to lead, perform and most importantly, to serve. As the team heads into a new direction with new leaders and a young crop of players, I feel it will be in the best interests of South African cricket to relinquish the captaincy in all formats. This was one of the toughest decisions to make, but I remain fully committed to supporting Quinton, Mark and my teammates as we continue to rebuild and re-align as a group,” Cricket South Africa (CSA) official website quoted Du Plessis as saying.
Keeping in mind a jam-packed international calendar–including the International Cricket Council (ICC) Men’s T20 World Cup in Australia this October and November, Du Plessis has decided to shift his focus entirely on contributing to the team as a senior batsman and offering his guidance and advice to the new leadership group.