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AB de Villiers makes grand comeback in Tests, goes past 10,000 first-class runs

AB de Villiers, who was playing his first Test since January 2016, made a wonderful comeback as he went past 10,000 first-class runs in the inaugural four-day Pink Ball Test against Zimbabwe in Port Elizabeth

cricket Updated: Dec 26, 2017 20:27 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
AB de Villiers,South Africa vs Zimbabwe,South Africa national cricket team
AB de Villiers went past 10,000 first class runs during the inaugural Pink Ball four-day Test against Zimbabwe in Port Elizabeth.(Getty Images)

AB de Villiers, who had not played a Test for South Africa since January 2016, returned to the longest format in style by notching a special milestone in the inaugural Pink Ball four-day Test against Zimbabwe in Port Elizabeth. (SOUTH AFRICA vs ZIMBABWE LIVE SCORECARD)

De Villiers, leading the South Africa side in the absence of Faf du Plessis, came to bat in the 25th over of the innings after Hashim Amla had fallen to Chris Mpofu for 5. On the second ball, he punched a full ball past mid-on for three runs to notch up 10,000 runs in first-class cricket.

The South Africa skipper joined the likes of Graeme Smith, Hashim Amla, Jacques Kallis, Hansie Cronje, Barry Richards and Kepler Wessels in an elite list of South Africa players who have gone past 10,000 first-class runs in their career. The right-hander smashed two consecutive boundaries to start his innings on a positive note.

De Villiers, who has played 106 Tests for South Africa, has battled injury, taken a break from the long form of the game and handed over the captaincy to Faf du Plessis as well as monitoring his back injury which has caused him problems. During that period, question marks remained whether de Villiers would play a Test but he has made a comeback for the Pink Ball Test against Zimbabwe.

This is the first time a Pink Ball Test will be played for four days. Play will be scheduled for six-and-a-half hours each day, half an hour more than in five-day games, with 98 overs due to be bowled in a day. South Africa won the toss and chose to bat with Aiden Markram and Dean Elgar putting on a solid stand before Zimbabwe struck back with vital wickets.

First Published: Dec 26, 2017 20:09 IST