Monday, March 4, 2024

Exclusive: Faf du Plessis on RCB, World Cup and injury layoff on First Sports

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Faf du Plessis has been on the sidelines after suffering a tennis elbow injury during the Caribbean Premier League (CPL).

Faf Du Plessis of Royal Challengers Bangalore during match 70 of the Tata Indian Premier League between the Royal Challengers Bangalore and the Gujarat Titans held at the M Chinnaswamy Stadium, Bengaluru on the 21st May 2023

Photo by: Ron Gaunt / SPORTZPICS for IPL

Faf du Plessis has spent the last couple of months recovering from a tennis elbow injury and watching South Africa suffer yet another heartbreak in an ODI World Cup.

Out of contention with the international side since 2021 in Test cricket, where he’s officially retired, and 2020 in white-ball cricket, Faf has stuck to play T20 leagues. That, however, was halted when the right-hander picked up a tennis elbow injury in August. It pushed him to the sidelines and out from the rest of the Caribbean Premier League (CPL) season with St. Lucia Kings.

Ever since, he has been operated and spent time travelling the globe including Qatar where he was pictured alongside former Manchester United and Real Madrid star David Beckham.

“Just been in recovery and it is tricky because it is a slow recovery,” he said on the process during an exclusive conversation on First Sports.

The teaser for the interview also saw him speak about South Africa’s World Cup campaign. At the recently concluded ODI World Cup, the Proteas exited in the semi-finals after playing a stellar tournament where they scored runs aplenty. But they were beaten by Australia in the last-four stage.

Speaking about the Indian Premier League (IPL), Faf du Plessis recalled a brilliant 2023 season. He scored 730 runs from 14 matches at an average of 56.15 and strike rate of 153.68. He struck eight half-centuries in IPL 2023 to finish the second highest scorer behind Shubman Gill.

Despite a sensational season with the bat, Royal Challengers Bangalore finished sixth in the points table and missed out on qualifying for the playoff spot.

“We enjoyed our season. From a personal point of view, it was the best IPL season I’ve ever had. And on a personal point of view, there have been some good ones,” said Faf.

On his relationship with RCB’s star Virat Kohli, Faf said, “Pretty good relationship. He’s an important part of RCB and the think tank around it.”

Full interview will air on 5 December at 7 PM IST and re-air at 10 PM IST.

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