The caretaker boss reported that the skipper was suffering over the weekend, was unable to eat and that his participation against Villa was something of a gamble.
"He did wonderfully for us," reflected David. "I went off on Saturday morning to watch a couple of games and I got the news from the training loosener that he was laid low from a stomach problem. Our doctor worked very well for us on it on Saturday.
"Despite him not eating any food because he couldn't, we took a massive chance and played him. We didn't want to change the full-backs around and put Taricco right and Konchesky left, so we took a chance on playing him.
"Stephen did well and was a real captain. He didn't contribute massively by his standards because he couldn't - he just did a fantastic job.
"I don't think people who knew the circumstances expected him to play at all and if the game had been on Saturday lunchtime he would have been a non-starter."
David added that he suspects the flying full-back is thriving on his role as captain in the absence of Jamie Redknapp.
"I think he is enjoying it and it gives him some kind of identity and respect for his efforts. I also think other people benefit from it."
David Pleat has revealed that Stephen Carr was a major doubt ahead Sunday's win over Aston Villa due to a stomach virus.