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South Africa v England

Watch: New coin flip technique can’t change Faf du Plessis’ bad luck

by Wisden Staff 2 minute read

South Africa captain Faf du Plessis has hardly enjoyed the best luck against England, and that extends to the coin toss, with the Proteas skipper in the midst of an historically bad run of form.

After losing the toss in the fourth Test against England at The Wanderers, South Africa have now gone two whole series, seven Tests, and almost a year without being able to choose whether to bat or bowl first. The odds of losing seven consecutive tosses in a row is 1/128.

Only one South African skipper has ever endured a worse run, with Graeme Smith having lost eight consecutive coin flips across 2008 and 2009. The world record is held by former England captain Nasser Hussain, who lost 10 tosses in a row across 2000 and 2001, which has a 1 in 1024 chance of happening.

Du Plessis is at least trying new methods in an attempt to get his misfortune to turn, opting for a limp, low throw rather than a full toss, but the result remained the same.

“That was such a pathetic toss,” said SuperSport presenter Mark Nicholas “Faf, how many is that in a row now? I think it’s seven.”

“I’ve lost count. Let’s talk about the match,” replied du Plessis.

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