South Africa superstar AB de Villiers has decided to skip the upcoming edition of the Big Bash League (BBL) but is open to returning to the tournament in future. The right-handed batsman, who played for Brisbane Heat in the last edition, pulled out of the tenth edition of the BBL, citing family and Covid-19 related issues.
Heat coach Darren Lehmann said Brisbane had been keen to re-sign the South African but factors emerged that “changed everyone’s plans”. The former Australia head coach said that the main reason behind AB de Villiers’ decision to skip the competition is the impending birth of his third child.
“The main one, aside from the challenges represented by COVID-19 and international travel, is that AB and his wife Danielle are expecting their third child very soon,” said Lehmann.
“He has been in excellent touch in the IPL for Royal Challengers Bangalore, so he obviously remains a player we’d like to keep working with when the circumstances allow,” added Lehmann.
AB de Villiers’ statement:
Explaining the reason behind his decision to skip BBL, AB de Villiers said the present pandemic and his young family were the main reasons. He, however, said that he still has some ‘unfinished business’ in the BBL as he expressed his desire of returning to the tournament in future.
“… with a young, growing family, and the uncertainty around travel and conditions due to COVID19, we reluctantly decided it wasn’t going to be this season,” AB de Villiers said in a statement.
“I am very open to returning to the club in the future. The team didn’t get the results we were hoping for and I consider there is some unfinished business to deal with,” he added.
AB de Villiers had plied his trade for the club last season but had failed to power the team to a good finish. Heat had finished seventh in the eight-team competition after managing to win just six of their 14 games.