Despite a tumultuous year on and off the field, marked by a dip in form and the Cricket South Africa board caught in an administrative rut, South Africa’s Test captain Faf du Plessis wants the focus to remain on the team’s cricket.
In the latest issue to plague the CSA administration, the suspension of CEO Thabang Moroe for alleged misconduct has signalled a new low, even as calls have grown louder from the South African Cricketers Association, to restructure the entire body, owing to issues ranging from their alleged mismanagement of finances, to the failure to appoint a selection panel for the men’s team only weeks before the Test series against England.
To top it all, the Test team is experiencing one of their toughest phases. They suffered a shocking 2-0 defeat to Sri Lanka at home at the start of the year, and more recently were thrashed 3-0 by India in their away series. But, ahead of the four-match England series, du Plessis has maintained his characteristic composure.
"Things have now reached a stage where we must ask what SACA, and the players, are expected to do when the leadership of CSA, both operationally and on its Board, continues to ignore our legitimate concerns."https://t.co/bkIamdGevx
— Wisden (@WisdenCricket) December 4, 2019
“There’s not much time before the English series, so now it’s about putting our focus back on to the team, making sure that the Test team gets all the things that are required for us to be successful,” du Plessis said.
“It’s been a little bit on pause the last two or three weeks, which is already too late, so we need to make sure in the next week, things will start unfolding to make sure the Test team gets the most attention. The last two weeks, there hasn’t been much attention on that, so that is what we will try and drive over the next week.”
Moroe’s suspension has paved the way for Jacques Faul to assume duties as interim chief executive. Careful not to switch too much focus back on the administrative side of things, du Plessis expressed confidence that Faul’s appointment could mean that the governing body is heading in the right direction. “Jacques is obviously a very experienced CEO, a doctor, so I am sure he is pretty clever,” du Plessis said. “It’s about the experience; getting people in that can take this great game of ours on the right track again.”
— Wisden (@WisdenCricket) December 3, 2019
The Test captain doesn’t want the ongoing administrative turmoil to be more than background noise and is well aware that the best way to achieve that will be through strong performances from the team on the field.
“There’s too much negative stuff that’s happened over the last four or five weeks and our cricket is too strong to have so many issues all the time,” du Plessis said.
“We are too proud a cricketing nation to be talking about this stuff all the time. The attention needs to be on the cricket and making sure we will build ourselves as a team and ourselves as an organisation to be great again.”