Cricket South Africa on Tuesday confirmed that AB De Villiers will not be coming out of retirement to play in the upcoming T20 World Cup for South Africa. The former South African skipper retired in 2018. Since then there were speculations of his international return but CSA’s recent statement has put an end to that possibility. De Villiers’ pre-mature retirement in 2018 had shocked the cricketing world.
Meanwhile, Cricket South Africa have put out a statement on AB De Villiers retirement saying that after having discussions with him he said that his decision on his international retirement remains final.
“Discussions with AB de Villiers have concluded with the batsman deciding once and for all, that his retirement will remain final,” Cricket South Africa said in a tweet.
AB de Villiers finalises international retirement.
Discussions with AB de Villiers have concluded with the batsman deciding once and for all, that his retirement will remain final. pic.twitter.com/D3UDmaDAS2
— Cricket South Africa (@OfficialCSA) May 18, 2021
A couple of months back, Proteas head coach Mark Boucher revealed that he has had a conversation with De Villiers and looked quite optimistic about his return. When asked, the 37-year-old AB de Villiers also gave a positive response as well while speaking in the post-match presentation of an IPL 2021 match.
“It will be fantastic to play for South Africa again, I will be speaking with Boucher late end of IPL – last year, he asked me whether I am interested and I said ‘absolutely’,” he stated.
Meanwhile, the Twitterverse and millions of AB De Villiers fans came out in support of the cricketer’s return to international cricket slamming the call by the cricket board.
Twitterverse Slams Cricket South Africa’s Call on AB De Villiers
— KAMRANism+Zalmi = Forever (@AhmadHappy_) May 18, 2021
Cricket South Africa announced that AB de Villiers won't be coming out of international retirement ahead of the upcoming T20 World Cup in India, saying that he has decided "once and for all" that his mind will not change. @ABdeVilliers17
— Shareef Shaik (@nagulsheriff) May 18, 2021
legends never retire…🙌
— Smrati dubey (@Smrati16083930) May 18, 2021
— arjun joshi (@arjunjoshi600) May 18, 2021
His decision is final…AB will not come out of his retirement. I respect his decesion, but as a die heart AB fan it hurts not to see him yellow and green #AbDeVilliers
— Muddasar Shaikh (@MuddasarSahikh) May 18, 2021
@ABdeVilliers17 , You can play from India as Wicketkeeper in place of Rishabh Pant, as he hasn't done anything in ODI and T20, he is suitable for Test. #AbDeVilliers #RCB #Cricket #southafrica #cricbuzzlive #CricTracker #ipl2021live #IPL
— Atul Singh Bisht (@bishtatul50) May 19, 2021
Play for India please#AbDeVilliers
— Meme Sense (@MemeSense1) May 18, 2021
— Abhinash Sabat (@im_abhinash) May 18, 2021
AB de Villiers remains one of the world’s finest T20 players and finishes as the fourth-highest run-scorer for South Africa in Tests and their second-highest in ODIs and T20Is. He was in red-hot form during IPL 2021 before the second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic brought the tournament to a premature halt, scoring 207 runs in six innings at an average of 51.75 and a strike rate of 164.28.