'Outstanding' Faf hailed for epic ton at Newlands

2019-01-04 21:56
Faf du Plessis
Faf du Plessis (AP)

Cape Town - Faf du Plessis was relieved on the second day of the second Test between South Africa and Pakistan on Friday at Newlands.

Despite his excellence with the captain's armband, Du Plessis has struggled with bat of late.

In 2018, Du Plessis only managed to score 463 runs at an average of 24.36 in 20 innings - ending the year with a historic pair in Centurion.

Striding out into the middle in the second over of the day, Du Plessis knew he needed to not only do the talking off the field, but on it too.

And he delivered in style.

The Proteas skipper stood tall as he made a brilliant knock of 103 off 226 balls on a misbehaving Newlands pitch.

Deliveries were inconsistent with Du Plessis - on more than one occasion - hit on the hands due to the unexpected and awkward bounce.

READ: Bavuma on Newlands pitch: Faf and I are still living

In 9 Tests played at the iconic Newlands venue, Du Plessis recorded his first Test ton at the venue, in front of the 10 000 spectators seated in Cape Town.

Du Plessis' ninth Test century was completed soon after he built a Test-saving 156-run partnership with Temba Bavuma, who scored 75.

Bavuma attributed their fifth-wicket stand to his skipper's calming influence that saw the Proteas end on Day 2 with a first innings lead of 205 runs.

"It was a mammoth innings from him. I think between us, he took more balls on the body, but he still managed to stay focused and commit to the next ball," Bavuma told reporters after the second day's play.

"We just tried to keep each other positive, try and keep the intensity up. He's one batter that is willing to share his game plan and what he's trying to do with the bowlers and allows you to evaluate your own game plan. He is a calming influence and that's his biggest trait."

Despite his objections to the pitch, Pakistan coach Mickey Arthur earnestly praised the Proteas skipper on his performance with the bat.

"I thought Faf was excellent today, and I thought the temperament he showed through the day was outstanding. I really do," said Arthur.

Read more on:    pakistan  |  proteas  |  faf du plessis  |  cricket


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