SA v ZIM 2018: "Fit-again" Faf du Plessis returns to lead South Africa

Faf du Plessis urges South Africa to focus on the bigger picture - World Cup 2019.

Faf du Plessis recovered from shoulder injury | Getty Images

South Africa received a major boost ahead of their crucial Australia tour at end of this October, as Captain Faf du Plessis has recovered from a shoulder injury and even will be featured in the third and final One-Day International against Zimbabwe on Saturday (October 6) in Paarl.

Plessis, who has recovered more rapidly than expected from the injury, trained with the national side here, is excited to be back on the field again and looking forward to playing in the final ODI of the three-match series that the host already won by winning first two encounters.

On Friday (October 5), Faf du Plessis told reporters at Boland Park, “The guys have been training hard. I have also been training hard with the guys and I’m feeling excited to be back on the field again.”

After coming back at the helm, Du Plessis' main focus will be once again on building the team towards the "bigger purpose", saying he wants his team to focus on 2019 ICC Cricket World Cup in England.

He further added, “The guys are motivated. We are not only looking at what is in front of us now, there is a bigger purpose and push for what lies ahead. At no stage will we be taking it easy. The guys are still trying to impress and are trying to get into that World Cup side. The players are motivated and driven to put in performances to put their names into the hat for the World Cup selection. As a team, we are still trying to find our feet as to how exactly we are going to go about playing in the World Cup. There are some exceptional players coming through which is great to see.”

Meanwhile, South Africa might have already won the ODI series against Zimbabwe, but their performance wasn't up to the mark, as the hosts were reduced to 58 for 4 in the first ODI and 101 for 7 in the ODI. However, the Proteas lower middle-order came to rescue in both matches and credit goes to bowlers that the hosts are 2-0 in the ongoing series.

The skipper noted, “The bowling has been exceptional once again. We have some good wicket-taking options throughout the innings. That is what we are working to get better on, from overs 11 to 50, we want to keep getting wickets, Imran (Tahir) has been exceptional.”

Commenting on batting, Plessis said, “With the batting, it is too difficult to say where we have been leaving it too short or where we have been good because it has been quite challenging for the batsmen. It (batting) has been difficult with the wickets that we have been playing on. One or two guys have been looking good but from a batting-unit point of view it has been tough for the guys.”

The captain is hoping to see a better performance from his batsmen in the final ODI against Zimbabwe. He signed off by saying, “I am hoping tomorrow will be a lot different. It looks like a good wicket. That is what you want to see, you want big runs on the board and games going on a bit longer.”

(Input: Cricketnext)


By Rashmi Nanda - 06 Oct, 2018

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