South African cricketer Faf du Plessis on Monday announced that he is stepping down from his role as captain of the Standard Bank Proteas' Test and T20 teams effective immediately. <p></p> <p></p>Citing the reason that he needed to take a step back, the 35-year-old said it would help facilitate the emergence of the next generation of leaders within the team under the new stewardship of Quinton de Kock. <p></p> <p></p>He said with a calendar that is jam-packed with international tours both home and away, including the ICC Men's T20 World Cup in Australia this October and November he would like to contribute for the team as a batsman and senior player who could offer guidance and advice to the new leadership group as part of their succession planning. <p></p> <p></p>Du Plessis has captained South Africa in a total of 112 international matches across all three formats since December 2012 when he led South Africa for the very first time against New Zealand in a T20 series. The hosts won that three-match contest 2-1. Since then, he has scored 5 101 runs in all formats as captain amassing 11 centuries and 28 half-centuries as he went. He led the Proteas in several famous victories, including the team's five-nil inbound ODI series and 2-1 outbound Test series victories against Australia in 2016. <p></p> <p></p><strong><em>His statement is as follows:</em></strong> <p></p> <p></p>"The last few weeks of rest away from the game have given me a lot of perspective on the great privilege and honour I have had in representing and leading my country in the three formats of this wonderful game. It has been a rewarding, sometimes tough and other times a lonely road, but I would not replace the experience for anything, because it has made me the man that I am proud to be today.