SA vs AUS 2018: Faf Du Plessis looks to seize on the Australian disarray

Fourth Test starts March 30.

Du Plessis will look to build on the Australian misery. (Cricinfo)

The Australian team is having a tough time in South Africa having lost the third Test match in Cape Town. They are now trailing in the series and going into the fourth Test match at the Wanderers they will be missing their regular skipper Steve Smith. 

Not only this, they are down on their morale after letting their team and fans down after getting themselves repeatedly in the middle of needless controversies and thereby hampering the progress of the series. It can be well said that the Australian team is very much in the limelight these days for all the wrong reasons. 

South African skipper Faf du Plessis now wants onto count on this opportunity and wants to make the most of it. South Africa have been constantly pressurizing the ICC to come down hard on the Australians after the recent controversy and demands a thorough investigation of it. 

The Proteas thumped the tourists by 322 runs in Cape Town, their opponents sheepish on Sunday’s fourth day after Cameron Bancroft admitted a charge of ball-tampering 24 hours earlier. Now the South African skipper wants to take full advantage of this Australian misery. 

“I believe we can put some more pressure on the Australian team with all the stuff that’s going on off the field,” he said of the fourth Test in his post-match presentation. “There’s a lot for us to work with.”

“We are extremely motivated in this series,” he added. “Since that defeat in the first Test match in Durban, our motivation levels have just doubled.

“The guys are extremely focused on putting in big performances. Although that was happening, it was pretty easy for us just to make sure we could tighten that screw on the Australian team.”

“I believe we can put some more pressure on the Australian team with all the stuff that’s going on off the field,” he said of the fourth Test in his post-match presentation. “There’s a lot for us to work with.”

Despite the controversy that engulfed this match and had the crowd involved, Du Plessis insisted his players had not been affected.

Some big names have been involved in ugly controversies in the series so far. It all started with a verbal banters between David Warner and Quinton de Kock. Things then turned earlier when Kagiso Rabada rubbed shoulders against Australian skipper Steve Smith. The ICC banned Rabada for the affray but then lifted the ban after Rabada appealed against it. The recent one involving Bancroft and Smith named the sandpaper gate scandal has been the worst so far as it has brought the faith of  the fans down. 

South Africa, however, is driving a lot of confidence from this Australian condition and will certainly have the upper hand going into the Test match where the rivals will be without their regular skipper Steve Smith. 

The final Test at the Wanderers will also mark an end to an illustrative career of Morne Morkel who bowled South Africa to victory in Cape Town. 

Morne Morkel collected the Man-of-the-Match honours after his career-best 9-110 across the two innings, with the retiring bowler delighted to take 5-23 as Australia capitulated from 57-0 to 107 all out on Sunday.

“I was hoping that I could deliver something special. I’m glad it all came together today at this amazing venue with the support of these people,” said Morkel, who reflected on another proud achievement having claimed his 300th wicket earlier in the Test.

The fourth Test at Wanderers starts from March 30.
 


By Anshuman Roy - 26 Mar, 2018

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