Former South African cricketer AB de Villiers revealed that he played the last two years of his career with a problem in his eye. The Proteas great explained how one of his children kicked him in the eye and hurt him.
Ab de Villiers arguably was one of the finest batters to have played for South Africa. Not many could do what he achieved in his career and it’s fair to say that he changed the dynamics of modern-day cricket with the brand of cricket he played.
However, he made many cry when he announced his international retirement in 2018. Ab de Villiers after that continued playing in the franchise cricket. The batter was the heart and soul of RCB and played a magnificent brand of cricket over the period he was with them.
In a shocking revelation, AB de Villiers revealed that he played the last two years of his cricket with a detached retina. He explained how even doctors were surprised after his surgery. Speaking to Wisden Cricket Monthly, he said:
“My youngster accidentally kicked me on my eye with his heel. I started really losing vision in the right eye. When I got the surgery done the doctor actually asked me, ‘How in the world did you play cricket like this?’. Luckily my left eye did a decent job for the last two years of my career.”
It’s fair to say that with the kind of display, he showed in the last two years of his career, it didn’t look like he had a problem with his eye. The batter set the stage on fire in the IPL for RCB and ended as one of the greats of the league. He ended his T20 career with a 9,424 runs strike rate of 150.13 in 320 innings. His tally of 9,424 runs also includes four centuries and 69 fifties.
I didn’t feel the same culture – Ab de Villiers on his international retirement
AB de Villiers also opened up about his decision to retire from international cricket and revealed why he didn’t reverse it.
He also admitted that he was completely shattered after the 2015 World Cup and after that, he didn’t get the culture he wanted in the team. He added that he pushed himself to play Tests against Australia and India as his last in international cricket.
“Covid certainly played a role, there’s no doubt about it. From an international perspective, the 2015 World Cup hurt big time. It took me a while to get over that and then, when I got back into the side and I was ready to commit, I didn’t feel the same culture that I really needed at that time.
“I often found myself thinking, I don’t know, eh? Could this be the end of my career? I didn’t even really want to play IPL or anything else. I got away from everything in 2018 and then decided to push one more time with a bit of Test cricket, to try and beat India and Australia over here, and then I’ll call it. I didn’t want any spotlight on me. I just wanted to say, ‘I had a great time, thank you very much’.”
In 420 international matches, AB de Villiers amassed 20,014 runs to go with 47 centuries.