RANCHI, Oct 18: South African captain Faf du Plessis has urged his embattled batsmen to take a leaf out of India�s book and �bat big� like the hosts in order to salvage pride in the third and final Test.
The final match of the series, which is already in India�s pocket following two convincing wins, starts here from Saturday.
The introduction of the World Test Championship also gives his team reason to look for points instead of giving up altogether, according to du Plessis.
�For me it�s important that the guys don�t feel like there is one week left in India and almost when you get on that plane to South Africa, the Test series we play now is for Test championship, there is points still up for grabs every Test match. So for me the challenge is more mental,� the South African skipper told reporters.
The Proteas� batting showed some fight in Visakhapatnam but disappointed in the second Test.
Urging his batsmen to convert their starts, Du Plessis said: �For all of us it is just about converting and I am not different to any one of those players when I get to 50, I want to get a hundred.
�The fact that I have done it twice already this series, there is no reason for me not to go and get a big one. That�s a challenge for myself because I understand that sixties is not going to win Test matches for us. I need to bat big like the Indian team has done and score big runs.�
Citing example of English skipper Joe Root, he said: �There are lot of good players who get a lot of fifties and there is a lot of chat about Joe Root getting fifties and stuff like that. I�m not different from any of these players.�
Du Plessis is leading a side in transition after Hashim Amla and Dale Steyn called it quits, and the skipper pointed out that South Africa were thrashed 3-0 in 2015-16 also, despite having a strong team with a record of 15 successive unbeaten series away from home.
�We came here last time with a very strong team as well, very experienced international team that did very well overseas, the best record abroad, and we still found it challenging.
�There�s an obvious reason that people who come to India find it tough to beat them at home. So it�s not all doom and gloom for me in that aspect. It�s about trying to improve as players,� he said. � PTI