We have a score to settle: Faf

South African skipper says team is keen make amends for 2015 India tour

We have a score to settle: Faf

On the eve of the high-profile clash against India, skipper Faf Du Plessis declared that South Africa had a "score to settle" with Virat Kohli's men who had inflicted a 3-0 defeat on the Hashim Amla-led side in 2015.

For the likes of Amla, du Plessis, AB de Villiers, Dale Steyn this may be the last series against India and the South African skipper wanted to go on a high.    

"I don't know when the next Test series against India is," du Plessis said on Thursday. "… But it's probably the last time all of us play against India and there's no better way than playing a series in South Africa. We were disappointed the last time (2015) we went there (India) and we've got a score to settle, so we're excited for this series," he remarked.

Du Plessis also equated the series between India and South Africa, the No 1 and 2 Test teams respectively, to the Ashes.

"It's good that we can have some importance to this series," he began when asked about the series. "Big series are why you play. We don't have an Ashes, so it's good to see that India versus SA can start becoming a really big series. There are some really high-class players that are going to bash it out over the next four weeks so that's exciting," he observed.

While previous South African skippers haven't openly advocated home advantage, du Plessis wasn't shy of announcing it.      

"I enjoy talking about the pitch," he stressed. "I like the fact that there is some sort of preference that we can try to get an advantage (from). I think the groundsman has done a fantastic job with the heat. The wicket looks good, like it's going to be a good cricket wicket. Nothing extreme. It looks like it's going to be exactly what we wanted."  

The right-hander also spoke of perils of overthinking the nature of the pitch. "You rock up and have to make decisions on the day. Some guys don't even look at the pitch because there's so much information that can go on in your head which is unnecessary. Obviously for a captain it's important that you have all that information ready because you want to make the right decisions."

Du Plessis was clear about the kind of pitch he wanted. He is fine with pace and bounce but not too much of seam movement.    

"In a  perfect world it will be a quick wicket that nips around a bit," he said when asked about what type of pitch he prefers. "We also want to try and eliminate spin as much as possible. When we played Sri Lanka here last time it was a really good wicket. You don't want excessive seam movement because that brings both bowling attacks into the game.  We feel with our seam resources, on a wicket that has some pace and bounce, we can exploit some of those areas in their batting line," he observed.

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