Lure of Kolpak deals and T20 circuit areas of big concern for South African cricket - Faf du Plessis

Despite a disastrous World Cup campaign, Faf du Plessis was of the opinion that South Africa don't need drastic changes after the tournament AFP

As South Africa's 2019 World Cup campaign is set to finish on an underwhelming note - irrespective of Saturday's result - the next thing on captain Faf du Plessis's mind is the two big areas of concerns that will affect the players going forward - T20 circuits and Kolpak deals.

South Africa have already suffered quite a bit with fast bowler Duanne Olivier becoming the latest amongst a long list of players deciding to ply their trade in the English county instead in search of better remuneration. There's also the T20 circuit, which is where the limited-overs players can head towards, as far as du Plessis is concerned.

"Cricket South Africa, I know they has been trying to put things into place. There's almost two groups of players when it comes to South African cricketers. There's I suppose more of your Test players. For them the Kolpak option is the dangling carrot and then for your white-ball specialists, it is probably the circuit, the T20 circuit around the world," Du Plessis said.

"So both of those areas is big concerns for cricketers in South Africa. So I think more looking at the one-day side, your players that will move on from the Proteas would potentially move on to the T20 circuit, maybe bar one or two, but that is generally where the opportunities lie for the white-ball players. So I think, naturally, with some of the guys finishing, they'll do that. I know JP's plan is to play one or two tournaments before he finishes. Certainly, that will become the biggest issue for us to try and stay away from for all players and that's, you know, including myself," he added.

Not too long ago, West Indies captain had called on the ICC to have a minimum wage structure so that national sides avoid losing some of their best talents to what they believe to be the proverbial greener pastures. West indies stars in particular have had stand-offs with their board over payments and found it more lucrative to turn out in the numerous T20 leagues that have mushroomed over the years. While Du Plessis admitted he would love for such a structure to be put in place, he felt it was a far-fetched thought.

"I think that is the perfect world, but we don't live in a perfect world so I don't think -- I think your England, Australia, India will always be the higher-paid nations. If that changes, it will be amazing for the rest of the world, but I think it's a long, long way from happening and that's one way that you can try. It is easier for the guys who are playing for England or Australia or India to remain in their countries and just play their cricket there. Obviously the currency is very strong but also the packages that they get paid is obviously a lot different to your smaller nations.

"And West Indies are a great example. They probably are the worst off and that is why they have lost so many players to the circuit. So, it would be great to see that happening, but I think it's a long way from happening," Du Plessis said.

Regarding what lies ahead for the team after a disastrous World Cup campaign, the captain shifted to a more optimistic tone, and felt they aren't in need of drastic changes.

"I think Cricket South Africa is in a good place. It's producing young cricketers," he said. "If you look at the last year or two, there's been so many young cricketers jumping through into the main side, probably more than ever, so that means there is talent, there's definitely talent and we are performing, you know, and obviously prior to this World Cup we are performing, we have been playing winning cricket, so long as you are producing cricketers that are winning there is nothing that needs to change."

"The question would come in is when you start losing consistently as a team and then you go "Right, what do we need to change here?" Right now, obviously people would be very, very disappointed and so are we as a team, but I don't think it's not desperate times calling for desperate measures yet," he added.