AB de Villiers retired on May 23 Image: Twitter
AB de Villiers played international cricket to his heart’s content for 13 years. He took some Superman-like catches at the boundary, played some never-seen-before strokes, and earned everyone’s praise for being an honest, responsible ambassador of the game.
While looking back on his illustrious career, he will certainly bask in the reputation of scoring 25 ODI and 22 Test centuries and breaking Sourav Ganguly’s record to become the fastest man to 9,000 ODI runs last year.
Most fans regret the fact that they won’t see him play in South African colours anymore. And as we fervently hope for an ABD U-turn, we also look at all that he could have achieved before walking into the sunset.
1. The Cricket World Cup
You had guessed this already, right? While everyone was busy putting their money on South Africa avenging the unfortunate semi-final loss to New Zealand in the 2015 World Cup, ABD retired. Over the years, the Proteas have earned the ‘chokers’ tag almost effortlessly. ABD probably retired before history got another chance to repeat itself.
2. ICC Champions Trophy
The Proteas won the ICC Knock Out Tournament back in 1998 by beating the West Indies by four wickets in a pretty one-sided final. Then in 2002, the ICC Knock Out Tournament became the Champions Trophy. And ever since, the Proteas have never even made it to the final of the tournament. Barely days before the CT 2017, ABD said he’s desperate to win the tournament. "I haven't won one of these trophies in my career, so I'm pretty desperate to win one, and we'll do anything we can to get out on top," he was quoted as saying by www.ecb.co.uk.
3. Indian Premier League title
Before playing for Royal Challengers Bangalore, ABD was part of Delhi Daredevils. Both sides have, sadly, never won the IPL title. Soon after dropping out of the play-offs race, Virat Kohli had apologised to all RCB fans and said that the Bengaluru-based franchise will bounce back stronger next year. ABD probably wasn’t in the mood to acknowledge promises.
4. Becoming the fastest to 10,000 ODI runs
ABD retired with 9,577 ODI runs in 218 innings. So, he just needed another 423 runs to reach the coveted milestone, which has been crossed by only 11 batsmen till date. He also had a chance to break Sachin Tendulkar’s record, who consumed 259 innings to become the fastest ever to the milestone back in 2001.