New Delhi: Hashim Amla stepped down as the South African Test skipper on the final day of the second Test against England which ended in a draw.
Amla, who rediscovered his form with brilliant double ton against England, made the surprise announcement just minutes after the Test at Newlands ended.
Speaking about the decision at a press conference, the 32-year-old said, "The decision was not made in the last couple of days. The decision was made at least two weeks ago, that too after giving a lot of thought."
Hailing AB de Villiers, who will be the new skipper, Amla said that the right-hander was a brilliant captain himself and the team was ready to achieve the best under him.
"The chat that I have had with the boys now, is I may not be captain, but AB as I said, is a very able and brilliant captain himself and we all will just follow a similar goal. For me, the mark of a good team is that everybody is pulling us in the same direction. Whether I am pulling the rope, or AB pulling the rope, or Dale pulling the rope, as long as somebody is going in the right direction, we all will go with him," he said.
Amla took over the captaincy from Graeme Smith in 2014, but his leadership suffered severe criticism in the recently concluded four-match Test series against India, which the Saffers lost 3-0. Amla failed to hit a single fifty in seven innings as the Virat Kohli-led side ended their nine-year unbeaten run away from home.