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Friday, Dec 13, 2019

IPL 2019: RCB should trade AB de Villiers with young talent, says former cricketer

Speaking as an expert during a pre-match show with IPL’s official broadcasters, Styris made it clear that it was time for RCB to look beyond de Villiers, who no longer plays international cricket.

cricket Updated: Apr 20, 2019 15:06 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Royal Challengers Bangalore cricketer AB de Villiers plays a shot during the 2019 Indian Premier League (IPL) Twenty20 cricket match between Mumbai Indians and Royal Challengers Bangalore at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai on April 15, 2019.
Royal Challengers Bangalore cricketer AB de Villiers plays a shot during the 2019 Indian Premier League (IPL) Twenty20 cricket match between Mumbai Indians and Royal Challengers Bangalore at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai on April 15, 2019.(AFP)
         

In a remark that could raise a few eyebrows, former New Zealand all-rounder turned cricket expert Scott Styris said Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) should trade AB de Villiers with a couple of good local Indian batsmen to resurrect their batting woes.

Speaking as an expert during a pre-match show with IPL’s official broadcasters, Styris made it clear that it was time for RCB to look beyond de Villiers, who no longer plays international cricket.

The former New Zealander further took to twitter to explain his remarks when a fan expressed his dismay at Styris’ suggestion. Admitting that de Villiers is a ‘genius’ of the game, Styris said that the overseas players are easy to replace in IPL. “ABD is a genius. But things aren’t working at RCB. So yes I’d trade him and get two very good local Indian bats back. Overseas can be replaced. Big call I know, but the right one??” Styris tweeted.

 

De Villiers has been a part of RCB’s squad since 2011. The former South African captain may not have taken IPL 2019 by storm but has made noteworthy contributions so far. He has scored 307 runs in 8 matches this season at a strike rate of 154.27 in a season in which most of the RCB batters barring Virat Kohli have failed miserably.

De Villiers was not picked in RCB’s playing XI last night against KKR because of an injury. RCB managed to win the match by 10 runs. But going by RCB captain Virat Kohli’s words, it was certain that AB will get his spot back in the playing XI whenever he regains his fitness.

“Before leaving, I told AB I will get a hundred for you, so he must be pretty happy,” Virat Kohli, also the man-of-the-match told the broadcasters.

Kohli, who scored a sparkling hundred last night – his fifth in IPL - also said it was important for him to bat carefully in the middle overs in de Villiers’ absence, stressing on the importance ‘Mr 360’ has in RCB’s batting line-up.

RCB are currently languishing at the bottom of the table with just 2 wins in 9 matches. They next face Chennai Super Kings at Bangalore on Sunday.