Amla will be the last guy to play 100 Tests – Du Plessis


Rex Clementine reporting from Johannesburg

South African batsman and Captain Faf du Plessis plays a shot during the second Test between South Africa and Sri Lanka on January 2 at Newlands Cricket Stadium in Cape Town, South Africa. (Gianluigi Guercia / AFP)

South African captain Francois du Plessis believes that an overdose of Twenty-20 cricket will eventually dry up players reaching the milestone of 100 Tests. Former South Africa captain Hashim Amla will play his 100th Test today when South Africa take on Sri Lanka in the third and final Test here at the Wanderers Stadium in Johannesburg.

Amla, 33, will become the eighth South African to feature in 100 Tests.

"It’s a massive milestone for Hashim. I am going to make a big call and say that Hashim is probably the last guy who is going to play 100 Test matches for South Africa because of the way the game is changing," Du Plessis told journalists.

"Quinton de Kock and Kagiso Rabada are probably looking at that as youngsters, but that’s a long way into the future. So for me 100 Tests is an amazing effort. As for Hashim, it’s another game for himself. He doesn’t want any shine or attention coming towards him. I would like to make it extra special for him," Du Plessis added.

"The game has evolved so much. If you take guys like Hashim, A.B. de Villiers, Jacques Kallis and Graeme Smith, there was a period where there was a lot of Test cricket over a long period of time. Now there’s a lot of T-20s. I just feel that the game is changing. I am not going to get 100 Tests. The guys playing in this team like J. P. Duminy and all, that’s something we will never get to."

"Hashim has been the rock of our batting. He is the most consistent player that we have had apart from Jacques Kallis. He offers us a lot off the field too. What he has done to my game is amazing. When he is scoring runs or not scoring runs he is the same person. That brings calmness to the dressing room. Certainly me as a player, I have learned a lot from him."

The Proteas are looking for a whitewash having missed out on a similar feet against Australia during the recent series.

"This is an opportunity for us to try and make sure that we make most of it. We have been consistent. It’s an opportunity for us to win the series 3-0. We had an opportunity in Australia; we didn’t make the most of it. We don’t get that opportunity to go 3-0 very often," Du Plessis said.

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