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Du Plessis: No ego contest with Williamson as Proteas skipper stays clear of mints

South Africa captain Faf du Plessis appeared to take aim at some of his counterparts prior to the first Test in Dunedin on Wednesday.

FafDuPlessis-cropped
South Africa captain Faf du Plessis

Faf du Plessis said captaincy should not be an "ego contest" as the South Africa skipper predicted a "chilled" contest against New Zealand counterpart Kane Williamson.

After claiming the one-day international series 3-2, South Africa are looking to transfer that form into the Test arena, with the three-match series set to get underway in Dunedin on Wednesday.

Du Plessis will resume his captain responsibilities of the Test team, having watched AB de Villiers skipper the ODI side, and the 32-year-old is not expecting any tension with Williamson as he seemingly took aim at some of his rivals.

While he did not mention any names, it appeared as though Du Plessis was referring to the ongoing battle between India captain Virat Kohli and Australia's Steve Smith in the Test series on the sub-continent.

"I've said it before; Kane and myself are similar personalities so there won't be a battle going on ego-wise," Du Plessis told reporters on Tuesday.

"It's more when you play guys that act like they want to run the show that's when the captains can have a bit of an ego contest out on the field.

"Not for the two of us. We're pretty chilled in the same way. It's about getting the best out of your team."

Du Plessis, who has overseen three consecutive Test series wins since placing De Villiers, is braced for the unexpected at University Oval.

Swing could play a big part throughout the Test and series but do not expect Du Plessis to sway from the rules, having been punished for applying saliva from a sweet or mint to the ball during South Africa's second Test against Australia in November.

"I don't know these conditions, so I'll have to see what the guys think is the best way to shine the ball," he said.

"Saliva? That's the process I'm following for the next while at least. Swinging the ball would be a huge factor in these conditions so you have to make it as shiny as possible.

"I don't think reverse swing will play too much of a role."

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