Blistering batter AB de Villiers retires from all cricket forms
AB de Villiers in action. (Photo by Bradley Kanaris/Getty Images)
FORMER South Africa captain AB de Villiers on Friday (19) announced retirement from all forms of cricket.
The explosive batter, who played in the Indian Premier League till this season, last appeared for his country in Tests in April 2018 when they played Australia in Johannesburg. In one-day internationals, he played his last international game against India in February 2018, more than a year before the 2019 World Cup. His last appearance in T20 internationals was in 2017 when he played for South Africa against Bangladesh.
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In an international career spanning 14 years, de Villiers scored more than 20,000 runs with 47 hundreds. In T20s, he scored nearly 10,000 runs in 340 games and was also as fluent in the wicket-keeper’s role.
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“It has been an incredible journey, but I have decided to retire from all cricket. Ever since the back yard matches with my older brothers, I have played the game with pure enjoyment and unbridled enthusiasm. Now, at the age of 37, that flame no longer burns so brightly,” de Villiers said in a tweet.
De Villiers played in 184 IPL games and was one of the mainstays of the batting order of Royal Challengers Bangalore franchise.
De Villiers’ decision to quit came just months after another South African great, Dale Steyn, retired from all forms of cricket. Incidentally, both players had made their international debut in the same game in 2004 – a Test match against England at home.
While bowlers in franchise cricket were relieved to learn de Villiers’ decision, former RCB captain Virat Kohli was dejected. Kohli, who shares a rapport with de Villiers, called the latter the most “inspirational” person he has met in his life and said their bond is “beyond the game and will always be”.
“To the best player of our times and the most inspirational person I’ve met, you can be very proud of what you’ve done and what you’ve given to RCB my brother. Our bond is beyond the game and will always be,” he tweeted.
“This hurts my heart but I know you’ve made the best decision for yourself and your family like you’ve always done. I love you,” he added.
De Villiers responded to Kohli saying, “Love u too my brother.”