Johannesburg, May 19
AB de Villiers refused to play for South Africa in this year’s T20 World Cup since he didn’t want to come ahead of players already part of the system, said national coach Mark Boucher. “AB has his reasons, which I respect. Unfortunately he’s no longer in the mix. I say unfortunately because I think we all agree that he’s still one of the best — if not the best — T20 players in world cricket,” Boucher told local media.
“But he alluded to being concerned about coming in ahead of other players who have been a part of the system. I don’t think it sat well with him, which I understand,” Boucher said.
Boucher said that he wanted to assemble the best possible players for the World Cup, which is scheduled to be held in October-November in India. But he added that South Africa will have to respect de Villiers’ decision to not come out of retirement, which he had announced three years ago. “As a coach I needed to try and get our best players, for the team and the environment. AB is an energy-booster in any environment, but I respect his reasoning. It was worth a go, but now let’s move forward,” Boucher said.
Last month, de Villiers had expressed his keenness to play for South Africa at the T20 World Cup. — Agencies