Faf, AB to discuss captaincy

AB de Villiers (Getty Images)
AB de Villiers (Getty Images)

Cape Town - The status quo remains, for now, and AB de Villiers is still South Africa's Test captain. 

But the 32-year-old, who missed this month's tour of Australia with an elbow injury, will sit down with stand-in captain Faf du Plessis in the coming weeks for a discussion that could have a big say in the direction that the Proteas Test team takes going forward. 

Du Plessis has impressed as skipper in De Villiers' absence, and the 2-1 Test series win in Australia followed a 5-0 ODI whitewash of the same opposition on South African soil as well as a 1-0 Test series win over New Zealand, also at home. 

All of those results happened under Du Plessis' leadership, and he has been at the helm of a Proteas resurgence in both the longer and shorter formats. 

There has been no official confirmation that De Villiers will be fit for the Boxing Day Test against Sri Lanka in Port Elizabeth, although he is expected to be. 

At this stage, it looks like he will resume the captaincy, though convenor of selectors Linda Zondi said that the upcoming discussions would also seek to uncover De Villiers' "state of mind" ahead of the series. 

Zondi, speaking to Sport24 on Tuesday, was clear about the fact that De Villiers remained South Africa's captain. 

"I’ve always stuck to one principle in terms of making sure we have options and a back-up system ... a pool of players for the future," Zondi said.

"We have stuck to that from a leadership point of view.

"The issue that has come up now is that Faf has given us that option ... we do have a leader who is capable to lead from a Test point of view.

"He has done a very good job for the country and the Proteas and he also gives us that depth. But, the principle remains. We had a captain before we left for Australia and the stand-in captain has done well.

"For now, the status quo remains until whatever decision from Cricket South Africa (CSA) or myself comes up. We had a stand-in captain, and our captain was here in South Africa." 

Zondi confirmed that the discussions between De Villiers, Du Plessis and management would seek to review how Du Plessis performed in De Villiers' absence.

"It would be naïve from us not to discuss it ... looking at the reports and feedback based on the tours that we had. That discussion will always be there," he said.

The meeting would also be in aid of "evaluating how our stand-in captain did, and where our full captain AB de Villiers' state of mind is," Zondi said.

Of course, the decision of who leads the team out at St George's Park will be an easy one if De Villiers is not fit yet.

Zondi, on Tuesday, was not sure of the state of De Villiers' recovery.

"The last time I spoke to our medical team they said AB was still going through the medical processes," he said.

"I will be guided by them. They will have to give us the green light in terms of AB’s progress."

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