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Ashwin and Co hold no terrors for SA enforcer De Villiers

Watching AB de Villiers in the nets is fascinating. The South Africa ODI skipper loves to constantly reinvent the wheel.

India vs South Africa 2015 Updated: Oct 14, 2015 11:34 IST
Sai Prasad Mohapatra
Sai Prasad Mohapatra
Hindustan Times
South Africa's AB de Villiers plays a shot during their first Twenty-20 cricket match against India in the northern Indian hill town of Dharamsala, India, October 2, 2015. (REUTERS)

Watching AB de Villiers in the nets is fascinating. The South Africa ODI skipper loves to constantly reinvent the wheel. Turning conventions upside down is what has made him a darling of the fans and a nightmare for bowlers.

The South Africans feel blessed to have a world class athlete in their ranks, before even seeing him as a cricketer. Electric on the field, effecting run outs, keeping wicket, he is the perfect package.

Standing on the cusp of greatness, de Villiers’ self-belief borders on the arrogant. R Ashwin got him twice in the T20s but de Villiers brushed that aside.

“He is a very good bowler but I don’t feel he got me out in either of the games, I got myself out in both. When you start getting technical flaws against a bowler, then you have to worry about it. I was looking to dominate against him and in the last game I got a little bit lazy perhaps. There is not too much to worry except for the fact that he is a world-class bowler and needs to be respected,” he said on Saturday.

No spin worries Buoyant after the T20 series win, de Villiers dismissed India’s spin threat. “I don’t think spin has been the theme of the series so far, our seamers have won the game for us. India has got really good spinners and we are expecting the wickets to get slower and turn more as we go on in the series. The wicket I have seen here doesn’t look like that. It looks like a really good wicket. We can expect normal spin but nothing out of this world. We will try and expose India in certain areas.”

Watching pace merchants Dale Steyn and Morne Morkel — they didn’t play in the T20s — steaming down is assuring for de Villiers. “It is nice to have Morne and Dale back, they have a lot of experience and bring good energy to the side. They look in really good form, especially Morne with his 100th ODI for South Africa tomorrow. It’s a great achievement and we are looking forward to walking on the field with a cheer,” he said.

First Published: Oct 11, 2015 08:19 IST