AB De Villiers was one of the half-centurions as Royal Challengers Bangalore opened their account against SunRisers Hyderabad with a ten-run victory in Dubai on Monday. AB De Villiers provided the finishing touches to his side’s innings, lifting them to a competitive 163 in 20 overs. The former South African skipper expressed surprise at finding form, having not played competitive cricket for a while.
AB De Villiers’ last competitive game was the 3TC game that marked the return of competitive cricket in South Africa in months. De Villers, who scored 61 from 24 deliveries and served as the captain of Eagles, guided them to the summit. On Monday, the right-handed batsman came out at the 12th over and found it hard to get going initially. Following the wicket of Virat Kohli, he cut himself loose and brought a fifty in the second ball of the final over. Manish Pandey ran him out the very next ball for 51 off 30 deliveries.
AB De Villiers expressed surprise at himself having played quite well and recalled the 3TC cricket in South Africa in July. He said that it was essential for him to play a defining knock and hailed the likes of Josh Philippe and the upcoming Indian talents. Debutant Devdutt Padikkal scored a fifty while opening the batting that set the tone.
“I surprised myself, to be honest. We had a competitive game in South Africa which was quite nice. It was important for me to get out there and I arrived here with a little bit of confidence. There’s a lot of Indian talent coming through and Aussie talent. We saw Josh Phillippe tonight, he is a great prospect,” De Villiers said in the post-match press conference.
“Tonight was a very pleasing start” : AB De Villiers
The veteran further stated that when someone has not played too much competitive cricket and heading for IPL, there are doubts. According to the 36-year old, the hard work put in by them has paid off in the form of a victory. It was unfortunate to be run out in the end; however, De Villiers is glad to have the basics right.
“When you come here and you haven’t played a lot of cricket so you do doubt yourself. But we have worked really hard in the last four weeks as a team and as an individual to get myself in some kind form. Tonight was a very pleasing start. Unfortunately got out form a run-out at the end but I am pretty happy with the basics that seem to be in place,” he added.