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Du Plessis: India's ruthlessness made us weak

South Africa lost the third and final test by an innings and 202 runs as India won a 12th consecutive series on home soil.

FILE: Speaking after the match on Tuesday, du Plessis said India were relentless in their approach throughout the series. Picture: Twitter/ICC.

JOHANNESBURG - Proteas captain Faf du Plessis said South Africa were outplayed by India in all aspects of the game.

South Africa lost the third and final test by an innings and 202 runs as India won a 12th consecutive series on home soil.

The visitors last lost consecutive Tests by an innings in 1935/36 against Australia, capping off a dismal few months for South African cricket after their disappointing showing at the World Cup.

The result also leaves the teams at opposite ends of the Test Championship standings, with India sitting at the summit having claimed a maximum of 240 points from the two series they have contested so far.

South Africa, on the other hand, are in seventh place ahead of Bangladesh and Pakistan, both of which are yet to contest a series in the newly formed Test Championship.

Speaking after the match on Tuesday, du Plessis said India were relentless in their approach throughout the series.

“Our batting line up was mentally weak, you don’t want to be that way and obviously try as hard as you can but India’s ruthlessness right throughout the series made it feel like there is no moment or opportunity in the game when you can hide. Your body and mind are constantly tired and then you make mistakes, that’s what makes them such a powerful team is their ruthlessness right now”, he said.

It has no doubt been a tough couple of months for the national team, both in terms of results and losing key players such as Hashim Amla and Dale Steyn.

The message throughout this period has been that South Africa are in team transition and that there needs to be patience as the side rebuilds, something that du Plessis reiterated after the match.

“The position that we find ourselves in now, with a lot of experience out of the test team, is that the rebuilding process will probably take a bit longer. Right now, it’s about identifying the personnel that you believe in and who is going to drive this team forward”, he said.

As he did after the World Cup, du Plessis was asked about his future as captain and what his role is going forward.

“It's a very, very young team and how I see my journey with this team is to help with that transition period. This period is about making that process smoother and identifying the next leaders or potential captains, working with them and when the time is right, the time is right”, he said.

It doesn’t get any easier for a beleaguered Proteas side in the Test arena with England set to tour in December as part of a four-match series.

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