Du Plessis: The team let AB down

Faf du Plessis has backed AB de Villiers as captain of South Africa’s ODI team even though they crashed out at the group stages of the Champions Trophy after a big defeat against India on Sunday.

The Proteas suffered a humiliating eight-wicket defeat to their Asian opponents at the Oval to be eliminated from the tournament after also losing Pakistan the game before.

It was not just the loss but the manner in which the Proteas capitulated in the batting department to be bowled out for just 191 in the first innings, which included three run-outs.

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De Villiers has endured a lot criticism during the tournament because of his batting, he only scored 20 runs in three games, but mostly for the way he has led the side.

De Villiers’ critics say Du Plessis, who led the ODI side to whitewash series wins over Australia and Sri Lanka over last year while AB was injured, should have been named as the permanent leader.

Already the Test skipper, Du Plessis however feels the players let De Villiers down in this tournament.

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Du Plessis said after the India defeat: “It’s so hard to put all this pressure on AB and almost blame him. I can certainly tell you he has led the team really well, he has done everything.

“The team let him down. I ran him out. There’s nothing that he did wrong today.  We were beaten, not even by a better team; we just played our worst game of cricket in a while. Every guy in his role in the team must take responsibility for not fulfilling his job today.

“It’s just the way we played in this tournament. I don’t think it was just today. The game against Pakistan was a very inconsistent performance as well.”