Perth [Australia], November 30 (ANI): South African batter Faf Du Plessis has signed with Perth Scorchers as a replacement international player for the upcoming 2022-23 Big Bash League (BBL) season.
"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 Big Bash League season," said a statement from the team.
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 8,074 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 am really excited to be signing with Perth Scorchers. I think the first thing that jumps to mind is that Perth is four-time champions, which is very impressive. Any player who plays around the world wants to win competitions, so it is a great franchise to be part of."
"I am also keen to come in and learn. I think it is important to learn from other people and organisations, and find out why they are successful. I am also excited to share my experiences and the things I have 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 have grown up with and I am looking forward to playing in Perth this summer."
WA Cricket General Manager - High-Performance Kade Harvey said: "We are 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 is 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 cannot wait to get him around the group," concluded Harvey.
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. (ANI).
The 12th season of BBL will start from December 13. (ANI)