ICC World Cup 2019: If AB Wanted to be Here, He Would Have Been Here - Ottis Gibson

South African head coach Ottis Gibson was not in the mood of taking questions on AB de Villiers in the pre-match conference. Gibson stated that if AB de Villiers wanted to be here, he would have been here. A fresh controversy was surfaced when South Africa’s cricket convenor Londa Zondi revealed that AB de Villiers had approached him prior to the day of World Cup squad selection.

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However, the team management decided not to entertain AB de Villiers who shockingly had called time on his International career in May 2018. In fact, Londa Zondi revealed that he pleaded with AB de Villiers to not take retirement one year before the World Cup. However, de Villiers was at peace with his personal decision.

AB de Villiers
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AB de Villiers cannot help South Africa now.

Meanwhile, Ottis Gibson said that the people are more interested in having AB de Villiers in the World Cup than the batsman himself. In fact, Gibson was not in a mood to entertain question on AB de Villiers.

“Personally I suspect there are a lot of people wanting AB to be here [more] than AB himself,” Gibson said. “If he wanted to be here he would be here.”

During the course of the press conference, he went on to say: “Are we going to talk about this all the time? Or are we going to prepare for the West Indies game.” He also said: “Feels like its a court case here.”

Meanwhile, South Africa have begun their World Cup campaign on a horrible note as they have lost their first three matches. Thus, they need to win all but everything now. The Proteas’ woes have manifold after their injury issues. Dale Steyn was ruled out of the tournament whereas Lungi Ngidi has been out for 10 days.

South Africa has been hit by injury woes.

“I can’t recall in recent history a team picking a guy that’s retired. Nobody’s shaken up, nobody’s died or anything… When we played in South Africa we won eight of the last 10 games… You guys [the media] weren’t asking those questions then.”

On the other hand, Ottis Gibson believes South Africa is not going to helped by AB de Villiers as he is retired now. Gibson added that the team can help itself and there is no point talking much about de Villiers.

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“I would want them to flip it the other way and show everyone that they deserve to be here.

“It’s only us that can change it [perceptions]… We can talk about AB all we want but he’s not here and he cannot help us. Only we can help us.

“We have to keep believing in ourselves and in the people who are here to do well in the tournament.”

South Africa will take on Windies in a must-win match at Rose Bowl, Southampton on 10th June.

Gautam Chauhan

Cricket is my first love. I want to be a wordsmith. I want to weave magic with my words.