Faf praises Proteas’ character after Test win

Proteas captain Faf du Plessis praised his team’s character after they bounced back from defeat to be victorious in the second Test against Australia in Port Elizabeth.

The hosts went down by 118 runs in the first game of the four-match series in Durban but stormed back with a strong performance at St George’s Park, winning by six wickets.

Du Plessis said the fightback in the second innings in Kingsmead, even though they eventually lost, was a turning point.

The SA skipper said: “That was an incredible Test match, especially after Durban where we were put under pressure for most of the match.

“This Test was for me just a huge indication of the pride and character in our team. We changed it around. They were on top. This Test was the other way around.

“It happened in the second innings in Durban, we put a peg in the ground, showed a bit of character, two young guys, the first innings here, we had to absorb a little bit.”

The home team’s victory was spearheaded by fast bowler Kagiso Rabada’s 11 wickets in the game while AB de Villiers scored a majestic century in the first innings.

Rabada, however, has been banned for the last two games of the series because of many indiscretions but Du Plessis wants to keep the focus on the field.

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The Proteas captain added: “The series has been too much about other stuff … it should be about the cricket.

“There is a lot of off-field stuff that is taking the shine off of some unbelievable performances from KG and AB as well, that should be headlines every day.”

The third Test of the series is scheduled to start at Newlands on 22 March.