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21st-Jun-2019

We left everything out there, and that's all I can ask for: Faf du Plessis

By Agency

In the year 2000, at a time when West Indies' decline had started gaining prominence in the cricket world, Steve Waugh was asked if he had any advice for Jimmy Adams to help their team come out of the rut. "Have a serious drink tonight," quipped the Australian captain to laughter in the MCG press room. Faf du Plessis's humour didn't resort to such black humour, but he did have time for some self deprecation after his side lost another bruising World Cup match to New Zealand, leaving them with only a far-fetched mathematical chance of still qualifying for the semifinals.
"You know, it's tough now. Like you can feel in the dressing room, the guys are hurting. I'm feeling five years older. My body is really sore after that," he said. " So we left everything out there, and that's all I can ask for as a captain, that the guys fought. They showed that."
There was a feeling of deja vu around South Africa's defeat at Edgbaston with the team finishing on the wrong side of every 50-50 moment in the game. Colin de Grandhomme was on 22 when he chipped Tahir towards short mid-wicket where a leaping David Miller just couldn't hold on to the catch. De Grandhomme went on to make a match-defining 60. Kane Williamson was on 76 when Imran Tahir went up in appeal after bowling the final ball of his 10-over spell. The New Zealand captain had toe-ended the ball, so the television replays confirmed. Because no one else appealed, Williamson survived to polish off the chase with a stunning unbeaten 106.
"We weren't aware of it. I think I was at long on at the time, and Quinny is the closest to the action. He's always my go to man," du Plessis said, when asked about the reprieve. "I just thought it was a plain miss. I just heard about it now at the post match that he said he had a nick on it. But even Kane said he didn't know he had to fine tune it. He would have referred it. But that's not where the game was won and lost."