South African cricketer Faf du Plessis announced his retirement from Test cricket on Wednesday. The 36-year-old released a statement to confirm the development.
Taking to his Instagram handle, the South African shared a picture of him in the Test attire raising his bat in the air alongside the caption that read, “My heart is clear and the time is right to walk into a new chapter.”
This was followed by an official statement where he wrote how in the last one year of “refinement in the fire”, he had gained clarity on various topics. Saying it has been an honour to play for the country in all the formats of the game, du Plessis mentioned how he realised it was the correct time to walk towards a “new chapter”.
He shared his gratitude for having been able to play as many as 69 Tests and act as a captain for the national side. “Every high and low has shaped me into the man I am proud to stand as today”. du Plessis captained the team in 36 Tests, winning 18 of them. As a batsman, du Plessis averaged 40.02, striking 4163 runs including 10 centuries and 21 half-centuries.
He now plans to shift his focus towards the shortest format. The cricketer feels that the upcoming few years are crucial for the ICC T20 World Cup and hence he wants to play T20I games around the world as much as possible before the tournament. “I strongly believe I have a lot to offer to the Proteas in this format,” the former skipper wrote.
Although he is prioritising T20Is currently, du Plessis assured fans that he is hopeful about playing in the ODIs too. He said he will be discussing the correct mode of action in the near future with Cricket South Africa (CSA) and reach a solution that is feasible for both parties.
He concluded the statement by thanking his wife, family and associates in the cricketing fraternity.
The right-hander has so far player 143 ODIs for his country along with 50 T20Is. He averages over 47 in 50-over cricket and 35.5 in the shortest format.