AB de Villiers on Wednesday (May 23) dropped a huge bomb on the cricketing world by bringing down curtains on his illustrious career. The decision came out of the blue and left the whole cricketing world shell shocked. The 34-year old announced his retirement from international cricket with immediate effect, saying that he was tired and wanted to bow out while still being on top of his game.

He confirmed the shocking news through a video, making it clear that he had played his last game for South Africa.

“After 114 Test matches, 228 one day internationals and 78 T20 internationals it is time for others to take over. I’ve had my turn and to be honest I’m tired,” he said.

“This is a tough decision, I have thought long and hard about it, and I’d like to retire while still playing decent cricket. After the fantastic (test) series wins against India and Australia, now feels like the right time to step aside.

“It would not be right for me to pick and choose where, when and in what format I play for the Proteas. For me, in the green and gold, it must be everything or nothing,” he added.

Credits: AFP

De Villiers will go down as one of the finest ever batsmen in the history of the game. No matter what the format was or what the conditions were, he rarely failed. If his traditional stroke-play made the traditionalists drool then his scarcely-believable wide array of unorthodox shots left this generation gasping for breath,

He scored a staggering 20,014 international runs (8765 in Tests, 9577 in ODIs and 1672 in T20Is). He also finished his career with a batting average over 50 in both Tests, and ODIs.

The right-hander also holds the record for the fastest 50, fastest 100 and fastest 150 in ODIs, all coming against the Windies. He smashed a 31-ball 100 in Johannesburg in 2015 and hit a 66-ball 162 in the 2015 World Cup encounter in Sydney.

Credits: AFP

Not surprisingly, tributes have been pouring in from all the corners ever since he announced his decision. And India spinner Ravichandran Ashwin also posted a brilliant message for the Proteas legend, tweeting:

Enjoyed watching you bat as a fan and much later as a player playing against you @ABdeVilliers17, well done on a great career for @OfficialCSA ?