Former West Indies cricketer Brian Lara and Australian cricketer — Matthew Hayden applauded AB de Villiers for his magnificent match-winning knock against Mumbai Indians in the IPL 2021 opener. Royal Challengers Bangalore defeated Mumbai Indians by 2 wickets at MA Chidambaram Stadium and De Villiers smashed a quickfire of 48 runs off 27 balls.
Royal Challengers Bangalore had to chase a 160-run target on a tricky wicket at MA Chidambaram Stadium. After Virat Kohli and Glenn Maxwell lost their wickets and RCB was railing at 103-4 in 14.1 overs, the wicket-keeper batsman De Villiers came to the rescue for the team. He smashed 4 boundaries and 2 sixes during his crucial knock in the match.
AB de Villiers Was Explosive At The Right Time, Says Brian Lara
While speaking to Star Sports, former West Indies cricketer Brian Lara praised AB de Villiers for his batting show against Mumbai. Lara said that De Villiers controlled the game and was explosive at the right time.
“He is timeless. He has got the experience. IPL is the only form of cricket he is playing at the moment. I suppose he is keeping fit and ready for it. At this stage, when you lost Virat Kohli, RCB needed him to come good. He was explosive at the right time, he controls the game. He came in after Glenn Maxwell as well, he controlled the game and got them home,” Brian Lara said.
AB de Villiers was Absolutely Remarkable: Matthew Hayden
Former Australian cricket Matthew Hayden called De Villiers’ performance remarkable. “Absolutely remarkable performance from ABD. To just have the presence of mind, when to go and when to hold back… the rotation of strike and the clean striking of the ball,” Hayden said.
Hayden also said that De Villiers’ 12 runs off Jasprit Bumrah 19th over emerged very crucial in the match. “The mark of a great player is how they take on other great players. Jasprit Bumrah is one of the best death bowlers, he has been for quite some time in this tournament. But ABD went straight after him, straight on the front shoe and those 12 runs in the 19th over is where Mumbai Indians came short,” Hayden further said.
AB de Villiers retired from international cricket in May 2018. He only plays franchise-based T20 tournaments since his retirement. Meanwhile, RCB’s Harshal Patel was awarded player of the match for his 5-wicket haul against Mumbai Indians in the inaugural game. He only gave 27 runs in his 4 overs spell and became the first bowler to take a 5-wicket haul against Mumbai Indians in IPL.