Thursday, February 2, 2023

Perth Scorchers: Faf To Light Up Furnace

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Decorated South African batter Faf du Plessis will soon call Optus Stadium home, after signing with Perth Scorchers as a replacement international player ahead of the 2022-23 KFC Big Bash League season.

A powerful right-hander, du Plessis represented his country 262 times (69 Tests, 143 ODIs, 50 T20Is) and captained the Proteas in 115 games (36 Tests, 39 ODIs, 40 T20Is) during an international career that spanned from 2011-2021.

He is also the most experienced player on Perth’s list, having played 311 professional T20 games and scored 8074 runs (four centuries, 50 half-centuries) at 31.05.

In Australia, du Plessis averaged 83.16 in Tests (499 runs from nine innings) and 52.60 in ODIs (526 runs from 12 innings), while he struck 27 from 15 during his only T20I on Australian soil.

The 38-year-old has proven his class playing multiple roles but is most at home near the top of the order where his timing and clean ball-striking rises to the fore.

Du Plessis is expected to be available for the first seven games of BBL|12, replacing Englishman Laurie Evans.

Perth will launch its title defence against Sydney Sixers in a twilight contest themed ‘Home of the Champions’ on Saturday 17 December at Optus Stadium.

Reflecting on signing with Perth, du Plessis said:

“I’m really exciting to be signing with Perth Scorchers.

“I think the first thing that jumps to mind is that Perth are four-time champions, which is very impressive. Any player who plays around the world wants to win competitions, so it’s a great franchise to be part of.

“I’m also keen to come in and learn. I think it’s important to learn from other people and organisations, and find out why they’re successful. I’m also excited to share my experiences and the things I’ve learned, and hopefully that can be a great combination.

“Looking from afar, it looks like Optus is probably the quickest wicket in the world. Watching the World Cup, the bounce looked very, very steep. Obviously, the wickets in South Africa and Australia are quite similar with more pace and bounce than spin, so it is something I’ve grown up with and I’m looking forward to playing in Perth this summer.”

WA Cricket General Manager – High Performance Kade Harvey said:

“We’re thrilled to sign a player of Faf’s calibre at such short notice.

“His record in T20 cricket speaks for itself. He can play in all conditions, bats anywhere in the top six, and has proven himself at the highest level for more than a decade. 

“Faf has been outstanding when playing for the Proteas in Australia, and he’s no stranger to the sort of pace and bounce that Optus Stadium offers.

“We believe his versatility, experience and leadership will be really valuable to our squad, and we can’t wait to get him around the group.”  

Perth Scorchers squad for BBL|12
Ashton Agar
Cameron Bancroft
Jason Behrendorff
Cooper Connolly
Faf du Plessis (international – South Africa)
Cameron Green
Aaron Hardie
Peter Hatzoglou
Nick Hobson
Josh Inglis
Matt Kelly
Mitch Marsh
Tymal Mills (international – England)
Lance Morris
Jhye Richardson
Phil Salt (international – England)
Ashton Turner (captain)
Andrew Tye

UPCOMING PERTH SCORCHERS MATCHES:

BBL|12 – Game 1
Perth Scorchers v Sydney Sixers

Saturday 17 December, first ball 4:05PM WST
Optus Stadium, Perth
LIVE: Foxtel, Kayo

BBL|12 – Game 2
Hobart Hurricanes v Perth Scorchers

Monday 19 December, first ball 4:15PM WST
University of Tasmania Stadium, Launceston
LIVE: CH7, Foxtel, Kayo

BBL|12 – Game 3
Melbourne Stars v Perth Scorchers

Friday 23 December, first ball 12:30PM WST
CitiPower Centre, St Kilda
LIVE: Foxtel, Kayo

BBL|12 – Game 4
Perth Scorchers v Adelaide Strikers

Monday 26 December, first ball 6:15PM WST
Optus Stadium, Perth
LIVE: CH7, Foxtel, Kayo

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