Saturday, January 20, 2018

Proteas star de Villiers crosses CPL off 2017 list

South African batsman, AB de Villiers.

CENTURION, South Africa, Jan 18, CMC – Any hopes Barbados Tridents had of re-signing AB de Villiers for the forthcoming Caribbean Premier League season were dashed when the South African batting star said Wednesday that of all the global Twenty20 tournaments this year, he would only play in the Indian Premier League.

De Villiers campaigned for Tridents for the first time last year, leading the Bridgetown-based franchise's scoring charts with 234 runs from six innings at an average of 58.

However, in ruling himself out of international cricket for most of the coming year, the 32-year-old said the IPL would be the only T20 tournament in which he would campaign.

“It (IPL) has almost become part of the ICC schedule but I won't commit to any of the other Twenty20 tournaments like the Caribbean Premier League or the Big Bash,” de Villiers was quoted as saying.

De Villiers, who announced last week he would not play in the Test series against New Zealand in March, said he would now also not play in the England series this summer and the subsequent Test series against Bangladesh.

The marquee right-hander said he needed some time away from the game as his “priorities have changed over the years” and he also felt burdened by the volume of international cricket being played.

“You won't see me at Big Bash, you won't see me in any County game or any other T20 tournament around the world, except for playing South Africa and the IPL. I would like to say I am still very committed to South Africa.”

De Villiers is one of the leading batsmen in international cricket, ranked number one in One-Day Internationals and in the top-10 in Tests.

He has amassed 8074 runs from 106 Tests – the third highest career aggregate in South Africa history – at an average of 50, along with 8742 runs from 206 ODIs at an average of 53.

Speculation has been rife over the last year that de Villiers plans to retire from international cricket and concentrate only on lucrative T20 tournaments across the globe.