JOHANNESBURG – Proteas test captain, Faf du Plessis says this has been the toughest period in his career.
South Africa returned home from India on Friday after they were whitewashed 3-0 in the test series.
India were in dominant mood on home soil and extended their winning run in the longest form of the game to 11 consecutive series on their own patch.The result also cemented their place at the top of the World Test Championship while South Africa are down in seventh.The result on the sub-continent coupled with a disappointing showing at the World Cup earlier this year, where the side won just three games, has taken its toll on the skipper.“It’s been the toughest part of my captaincy journey, not even captaining, playing journey, the fact that you go through such challenges and hardships but the thing that it keeps telling me is that it needs characters and people who are willing to stand up because the easiest thing in the world to do is to run away”, he said.While in India, du Plessis said the mental toughness is an area that players at the highest level need to work on and that the management group is trying to figure out how best to do that.“We are trying to see if there is a person or persons that we can get involved to try help in this area. I also believe that its important for players under the Proteas to go through the same thing so by the time they get to that level, they are at a level where they can perform all year round in a high-pressure environment”, he said.Du Plessis also admitted that the toss played a pivotal role in the outcome of the matches and that it was ‘almost impossible’ to beat India when they chose to bat first.That prompted du Plessis to reiterate his calls to scrap the toss altogether.“The best way I see it in the future is to take away the toss altogether because then away teams have a better chance. In South Africa if you take away the toss, I dint mind that because we bat first on green tops anyway, so I think we will just bat first regardless where as if you go to the subcontinent you will have a better chance”, du Plessis said.South Africa’s next assignment in the test arena is to welcome England from the 26th of December.