RCB vs SRH: ‘I surprised myself, to be honest,’ AB de Villiers on finding form in IPL 2020 despite not playing a lot of competitive cricket
AB de Villiers came in and rescued the challengers with a quick-fire fifty at the end. De Villiers hit 51 runs off 30 balls to provide the much needed final flourish for RCB to take their total to 163.Updated: Sep 22, 2020, 13:49 IST
Royal Challengers Bangalore made an incredible comeback against Sunrisers Hyderabad on Monday to win their first match in the 13th edition of the Indian Premier League. RCB were asked to bat first and made an impressive start with young opener Devdutt Padikkal scoring 56 off 42 balls. Wickets starting tumbling at the other end and it looked RCB had wasted the good start.
But AB de Villiers came in and rescued the challengers with a quick-fire fifty at the end. De Villiers hit 51 runs off 30 balls to provide the much needed final flourish for RCB to take their total to 163. The South African hasn’t played much cricket in the past after retiring from international cricket in 2018 but he looked in ominous touch at the Dubai International Stadium.
So how is de Villiers able to perform at an optimum level despite having big gaps in playing days? The 36-year-old says he is also surprised by it.
“I surprised myself, to be honest. We had a competitive game in South Africa which was quite nice. It was important for me to get out there and I arrived here with a little bit of confidence. There’s a lot of Indian talent coming through and Aussie talent. We saw Josh Phillippe tonight, he is a great prospect.”
“When you come here and you haven’t played a lot of cricket so you do doubt yourself. But we have worked really hard in the last four weeks as a team and as an individual to get myself in some kind form. Tonight was a very pleasing start. Unfortunately got out form a run-out at the end but I am pretty happy with the basics that seem to be in place,” de Villiers said post-match.
Chasing 164 for a win, SRH were all out for 153 in 19.4 overs. The Sunrisers were on course for a comfortable chase with Jonny Bairstow (61 off 43) looking in ominous touch. Chahal (3/18) removed the Englishman and Vijay Shankar in successive balls in the 16th over to tilt the game decisively in his team’s favour.
(with PTI inputs)