T20 World Cup: Cricket South Africa couldn’t agree on a deal with Faf du Plessis, reveals Graeme Smith

CSA director of cricket Graeme Smith revealed that the board could not agree on a deal with ex-captain Faf du Plessis ahead of T20 World Cup.
CSA director of cricket Graeme Smith revealed that the board could not agree on a deal with ex-captain Faf du Plessis ahead of T20 World Cup.

T20 World Cup: Cricket South Africa couldn’t agree on a deal with Faf du Plessis, reveals Graeme Smith – South Africa announced their squad for the T20 World Cup on Thursday, with Temba Bavuma set to captain the 15-man contingent. While the likes of Quinton de Kock, Kagiso Rabada and David Miller were obvious inclusions in the South Africa T20 WC squad, the absence of Faf du Plessis baffled the supporters, with the former South African captain plying his trade across various T20 leagues, having not stepped down from limited-overs cricket. Du Plessis had confirmed previously that he remained available for selection, should the call up come before CSA announced their squad.

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CSA Director of cricket Graeme Smith said talks had been held with 37-year-old Du Plessis but said it was not possible to reach an agreement with the former captain who is now regarded as a “free agent” as he is no longer contracted to CSA.“When you are working with free agents you have to come together. You have to find that balance that works for both the team and the free agents,” said Smith. “With Faf in particular we struggled to find that balance.”

Faf du Plessis had retired from Test cricket signalling his intention to extend his white-ball career with an aim to play the next two World Cups. He recently underlined his credentials by hitting 120 off 60 balls in a Caribbean Premier League match for St Lucia Kings against St Kitts & Nevis Patriots in Basseterre last Saturday. Du Plessis has also been one of the consistent performers in the IPL, but yet saw no call-up.

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Fellow free agent Chris Morris, regarded as a leading all-rounder in t20 leagues all over the globe, was also discussed as a possibility, but South Africa put their faith in Wiaan Mulder and Dwaine Pretorius to deliver the goods. Morris is the most expensive player in IPL history, and is an able contributor with both bat and ball, making him a valuable asset. Du Plessis’ CSK teammate Imran Tahir was also discussed reveals Smith, but the selection committee went ahead with the likes of Tabraiz Shamsi and Keshav Maharaj.

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Quinton de Kock, David Miller and Kagiso Rabada are the only players in the South Africa T20 WC squad who played in the 2016 World T20 in India.