Ever since Mark Boucher became the head coach of the South African cricket team, he has dropped hints about AB de Villiers rejoining the team for the T20I World Cup, slated to be held in Australia later this year. Even though de Villiers was not selected for the tour against Australia, Boucher said that he and “other agents” have been given ample time to make themselves ready for the T20I tournament after the 13th season of the IPL.
According to cricket.com.au, Boucher said, “The big one is the IPL so we decided to let those guys – the free agents if you want to call them that – do the IPL and then afterward make themselves available.”
The head coach further said, “We’ve still got quite a few games (before the World Cup). From the first of June, which is the Sri Lanka tour, those guys need to make themselves available. Whether we select them is another story. But they need to make themselves available if they want to put their hands up for a World Cup spot.”
On a positive note, de Villiers himself stated that he is ready to make a comeback for the team and play in the T20I tournament.
Cricket.com.au quoted de Villiers as saying, “I would love to (return to cricket). I’ve been talking to ‘Bouch’ (Mark Boucher), (new director of cricket) Graeme Smith and (captain) Faf (du Plessis) back home, we’re all keen to make it happen.”
He further added, “So I’m thinking of throwing my name in the hat and hoping that everything will work out.”
The 35-year-old had announced his retirement from international cricket on May 23, 2018. However, his return is pertinent, as South Africa currently does not have many bankable stars who can help lead their team to victory. The Proteas had a dismal World Cup last year, and have been poor in other tournaments as well, and experts believe de Villiers’ services are required now more than ever.
The ICC T20 World Cup 2020 will start from October 18 and end on November 15 in Australia.