“I am tired.” With those words ended one of the greatest modern day careers. AB de Villiers has bid adieu to the international game, just four days after completing another IPL season with Royal Challengers Bangalore.
De Villiers, 34, made his announcement public via a video posted on his official app. “I have decided to retire from all international cricket with immediate effect,” he said. “After 114 Test matches, 228 ODIs and 78 T20 Internationals, it is time for others to take over. I have had my turn, and to be honest, I am tired.
“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 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. I will always be grateful to the coaches and staff of Cricket South Africa for their support through all these years. The most important thank you goes out to all of my team-mates throughout my career, I wouldn’t be half the player that I am without the support throughout the years.
“It’s not about earning more somewhere else, it’s about running out of gas and feeling that it is the right time to move on. Everything comes to an end. To the cricket fans around South Africa and the world, thank you for your kindness and generosity, and today, for your understanding.
On Wednesday, de Villiers confirmed that he will not challenge for the World Cup when he announced his retirement from all international cricket, ending a a 14-year career in which he has broken several records. De Villiers’ finishes as South Africa’s fourth-highest run-scorer in Test cricket and second-highest ODI run-scorer. He also holds the record for fastest hundred in ODI cricket, scored off 31 balls. Numbers aside, his immensely entertaining batting is something he will be remembered by.
De Villiers redefined creative stroke-play, single-handedly changed the course of innings, and regularly brought out a range of innovative shots that were particularly admired in the shortest formats. He has indicated he will continue to play in T20 leagues but has not signed on for this year’s Caribbean Premier League. De Villiers may make himself available for his South African domestic franchise, the Titans, but indicated a Kolpak deal is not in the works as he has “no plans to play overseas”. (Excerpts from ESPNcricinfo)