Faf: T20 League won't change my Test commitment

2017-06-22 14:05
Faf du Plessis (Gallo)

Cape Town - Proteas Test captain Faf du Plessis says he wants to keep playing in the format for as long as possible despite his confirmed participation in the first ever T20 Global League in South Africa. 

Du Plessis, now 32, will represent the Stellenbosch-based side when the tournament gets underway in November. 

While there is an element of excitement surrounding the competition, there is a concern that it is another step towards privately-owned T20 franchise competitions being more of a priority than Test cricket. 

As it stands, the T20 Global League final is on December 16, but there has been no official confirmation that India's tour of South Africa will definitely take place over December and the New Year. 

The concern is that, with the increased T20 workload, some players will turn their back on Test cricket for the shorter and more lucrative format. 

Proteas ODI captain AB de Villiers has done just that, saying that he cannot commit to playing Test cricket for South Africa this year while he has played in the IPL and will also play in the Global League. 

But Du Plessis, speaking in London on Monday, said that he remained committed to T20 cricket regardless of how many T20 competitions there were.

"I'm very focused on playing Test cricket," he said, before defending De Villiers' decision.

"Every guy is different. AB will have his own reasons for not playing Test cricket. He's put in a huge shift for South Africa and now he wants to spend some time with his family."

Du Plessis added that the timing of the Global League was important as it did not clash with the international schedule. 

"Personally, I would like to play Test cricket for as long as possible and the fact that the T20 Global League is there and that all the other tournaments around the world are there doesn't change that," he said.

"The important thing is that there's a gap for us to play in it. If there wasn't a gap then players would have to choose between one or the other and I think it's really important that you don't have that clash."

Du Plessis is currently in South Africa awaiting the birth of his first child, placing him in doubt for the first of four Tests against England at Lord's on July 8. 

Should Du Plessis be unavailable for that match, the Proteas would have to find a stand-in captain. 

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