Gibbs and Prince hit out at Faf over AB
PROTEAS Test captain Faf du Plessis has been criticised by former teammates following his comments about his predecessor, AB de Villiers, who he said had “earned the right to do whatever he wants to”.
Du Plessis had commented on De Villiers’s decision to make himself unavailable for Test selection.
Former Proteas batsman Herschelle Gibbs said on Twitter: “Captain putting a player on a pedestal! Never thought I’d see this… anyway.”
Gibbs added: “( Jacques) Kallis achieved more than AB ever will, but he kept on playing and never disrespected the team and the game. Remember that.
“Has nothing to with administrators, that’s the national captain speaking! Did (Graeme) Smith ever say Kallis could do that? And he achieved more.”
Ashwell Prince, a former Test captain, also tweeted: “Ridiculous statement (by Du Plessis). Just wondering at
which point then @amlahash (Hashim Amla) will be allowed to do what he wants. Soon it’s free for all.”
The Proteas recently lost a four-Test series 3-1 in England without the 106-capped De Villiers.
“I think the general frustration of supporters in South Africa is that people feel if AB was there, we’d have had a better chance of winning the series. I am of the same opinion,” Prince said.
“South Africans want to win, we all want to win. So people are saying if AB was there we’d have a better chance. And I agree with that.
“I think there might be a deeper reason why AB is not currently playing Test cricket.
“I think as far as I know, and I’ll stick my neck out here, he’s always been committed to South African cricket.
“And if there are any other issues… perhaps personal, perhaps something between him and Cricket SA, maybe it’s best for AB and his own reputation also that that comes out.
“Because his reputation is being tarnished at the moment.
“My comments are not about AB de Villiers. My com- ments are about the notion, or the suggestion by Faf, that AB can do what he wants,” he added.
“My view would be exactly the same if he (Du Plessis) was saying Hashim could do what he wants or Vernon (Philander) could do what he wants.
“My view is simple – nobody in the team should ever be allowed to do just as they want.
“I think it’s reckless of the captain to suggest that any player, regardless of who that player is, can do just as they want in the national team environment.
“I think the national team is more important than anybody.
“Where do you draw the line? Because Hashim has played as many matches as AB de Villiers, so then do you say Hashim you can also do what you want?
“And then who is the next senior player? ‘ Oh, Vernon, you’re like a superstar as well and you can also do what you want.’
“And then where do you draw the line?”
De Villiers’s Test future, along with the racial make-up of the Proteas team, has been heavily debated by commentators and on social media.
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