Faf du Plessis speaks about last-minute phone call from AB de Villiers

Live Cricket Streaming June 10 – South Africa v West Indies, 2019 ICC Cricket World Cup

Live Cricket Streaming June 10 – South Africa v West Indies, 2019 ICC Cricket World Cup

Faf du Plessis insists that the furore surrounding AB de Villiers' proposed return from global retirement has not been a factor in the team's disjointed display in the World Cup to date, and in fact he believes it could be the sort of issue that draws the squad closer together as they reach the make-or-break moments of their campaign.

Just after South Africa lost to India by six wickets on June 6, news came out that de Villiers had wanted to come out of retirement for the World Cup but his last-ditch offer was rejected by South Africa's team management on the eve of the squad announcement.

The revelation last week that the star batsman made a last-minute offer to come out of global retirement for the World Cup reportedly unsettled a squad that had already lost its first three games.

It was revealed last week that AB de Villiers offered to come out of global retirement to play another World Cup.

AB de Villiers plays a candid shot.

"Everybody agreed it was way, way too late to change (the squad)", he added.

Du Plessis, who has not spoken on the issue earlier, chose to open up on Monday after his side's match against the West Indies was washed out.

Dale Benkenstein, the Proteas batting coach, admits that the tension of the World Cup has played a pivotal role in the poor performances thus far. "I guess it is a blessing this game is over and we can look forward to the game against England". He played 228 one-day internationals for South Africa, scoring 25 centuries and amassing nearly 9,577 runs at an average of 53.50.

Faf du Plessis hopes the controversy over AB De Villiers' attempt to come out of retirement for the 2019 ICC World Cup can fuel his side's bid to rescue their spluttering campaign. "Didn't have a huge impact", he said.

The squad took the news in its stride last week, du Plessis said, and just made a decision to get on with things.

"There was a discussion on clarity and making sure everyone knows what´s going on".

South Africa must win their final five matches to qualify from the round robin group stage however, with clashes again Afghanistan, New Zealand, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Australia still to come. "The team was happy to get on with business".

Defeat to the West Indies would have left South Africa with nearly no chance of qualifying for the semi-finals.

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