The South Africa team is in deep trouble in terms of their ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 campaign. The situation even got to a point where retired batsman, AB de Villiers attempted to come out of retirement. However, skipper Faf du Plessis hopes that the controversy surrounding his former teammate can serve as a confidence booster.
South Africa’s chance of redemption evaporated when their West Indies clash was called off due to rain in Southampton. South Africa captain du Plessis, is desperate to register a win after three successive defeats, and the abandoned the West Indies game did not help matters.
Now, South Africa have a new dilemma on their hands, namely former star batsman AB de Villiers offering to come out of retirement. However, the South Africa cricket board refused to take the bait. Now, Du Plessis believes that the AB de Villiers selection saga could help the squad be more tightly knit.
He said, “There was just a discussion on clarity and on making sure everyone knows what’s going on and then it was moving on. The team was happy to get on with business. But it is stuff like that generally you feel like it can make you, give you direction in your team and give you purpose to focus on what lies ahead.”
AB de Villers approached du Plessis during the IPL 2019 season, but the Proteas skipper told him that ‘it was too late’.
Faf du Plessis continued, “It was just a conversation, a phone call the night before the team got announced. It was just a ‘this is what I’m feeling’ [phone call].
“I said to him, ‘I think it is too late but I will check in with the coach and the selectors the next morning.’ When I spoke to the coach and the selectors, they all agreed that it was way, way too late to change the team on 99.99.”
However, du Plessis insists that the rebuttal did not sour their friendship at all and they are still very good friends.
“AB and I are still friends. This incident has not changed that. This is a small thing for a friendship that goes so way back.”
South Africa dodged a bullet when the West Indies game was called off, as a loss would spell disaster and no chance of qualifying for the semi-finals. The bad news is that they have five games left and are on the bubble of recording their worst World Cup performance.
However, du Plessis has insisted that the morale in the South Africa camp is still high. All this is in spite of poor performances against England, Bangladesh and India. According to the skipper, South Africa need to have individuals step up and boost the team’s confidence.