Faf du Plessis has announced that he is stepping down from his role as captain of the South African test and T20 cricket teams effective immediately.

The 35-year-old says he needs to take a step back from the captaincy in order to help facilitate the emergence of the next generation of leaders within the team under the new captaincy of Quinton de Kock.

Du Plessis says he also wants to concentrate on contributing to the team as a batsman and senior player who will offer guidance and advice to the new leadership group as part of their succession planning.

“South African cricket has entered a new era. New leadership, new faces, new challenges, and new strategies. I remain committed to playing all three formats of the game for now as a player and will offer my knowledge and time to the new leaders of the team.”

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 in a T20 series against New Zealand.