Faf: Rise of T20 cricket responsible for shorter Tests

2019-01-07 08:06
Faf du Plessis (Gallo)
Faf du Plessis (Gallo)

Cape Town - Pakistan coach Mickey Arthur's comments after day two of the second Test against the Proteas at Newlands certainly ruffled some feathers. 

Proteas skipper Faf du Plessis had just carved out a superb century, but Arthur used his post-day press briefing to slam the uneven bounce of the Newlands wicket, saying it was not good enough for Test cricket. 

It was another example of pitches in South Africa having come under the spotlight in the last 12 months. 

South Africa would go on to win the Test by 9 wickets on Sunday morning to take an unassailable 2-0 lead in the series, but the microscope on the wickets is likely to continue going into the third Test at the Wanderers starting on Friday. 

All of Temba Bavuma, Kagiso Rabada, Du Plessis and coach Ottis Gibson said during the Test that the Newlands wicket, while tough, was not impossible to bat on. 

It took South Africa just 47 minutes on the fourth morning to knock off the 41 runs needed to win the Test on Sunday, and Du Plessis believes that the rise of T20 cricket around the world has contributed to Test matches becoming shorter. 

"A lot," he said when asked how much of an impact T20 cricket has had on the Test product.

"There are not a lot of Test matches that go to five days around the world and that's definitely the batsmen and the speed of play that has gone up tremendously.

"Batsmen leave a couple of balls and then you feel like they want to come at you.

"Yesterday (Saturday) was a great example. Pakistan had an opportunity to bat and they went at four and a half an over."

The new, positive approach that many teams, South Africa included, are taking to their Test cricket is something that Du Plessis feels has benefited the format.

"Test cricket has evolved and it's great for the fans to come in and watch. They are getting fours, sixes and lots of wickets," he said.

"I love the way Test cricket is at the moment.

"I think the change was necessary and it's been the most exciting format in the last year of all.

"You always feel like every session is so important because if you are off the boil, the Test match is gone as it moves so quickly. T20 has been a big change in Test cricket."

Du Plessis, meanwhile, is suspended for the 3rd Test having been given a demerit point for South Africa's slow over rate in Cape Town.

Read more on:    proteas  |  faf du plessis  |  cape town  |  cricket


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