Amla resigns as Test skipper after draw

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South Africa top order batsman Hashim Amla has resigned from the Test captaincy with immediate effect, he announced after the second Test against England ended in a draw in Cape Town on Wednesday.

ODI skipper AB de Villiers will lead the side for the rest of the series, starting with the third Test in Johannesburg on 14 January.

Amla was under massive pressure since the start of his tenure, following on from Graeme Smith's decade in charge, and with the loss of the series against India combined with the defeat in Durban, it sounded the end.

Amla's form with the bat seemed to suffer with the capaincy, scoring just one century in 2015, and while he returned to form at Newlands with a double ton to save the match, he opted to relinquish the formal leadership role.

“Naturally this decision is not an easy one but the more I think about it the more I believe I can be of greater value to the Proteas as a fully focused batsman and senior player at this time of rebuilding our team” said Amla.
 
“I am deeply grateful and privileged to have been the Test captain and I wish to thank CSA for the honour of captaining my country. It was enjoyable and indeed a great learning experience.”
 
Cricket SA Chief Executive, Haroon Lorgat said: “We respect Hashim’s decision and the manner in which he thought about it and then communicated with me. It was consistent with his well respected personality.
 
“He still has a huge role to play in shaping the success of our team without the need for a leadership title. He is just that type of a person and we are very fortunate to have him in our stable.
 
“I want to thank AB for readily accepting the challenge of rebuilding our Test team as we seek to remain the best team in the world."
 
De Villiers said: “I’ve said this before that it is an incredible honour to captain South Africa in any format. The captaincy has obviously come at short notice and is the realisation of a lifelong dream,.
 
“At the moment my priority and focus is placed on leading this team to what can be a memorable series win against England. 

"This Test squad is motivated and determined to turn our performances around and I’m looking forward to taking up that challenge as captain. Hashim is a good friend and close colleague and I am grateful for his support.”
 
Amla also paid tribute to his fellow players and management team.
 
“Throughout my time as captain, whether in good times or tough times, I’ve always had the full support of my team mates, coaching staff and management. I want to acknowledge this superb group of people for always being there and for supporting me wholeheartedly,” Amla concluded.

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