INDIAN PREMIER LEAGUE
AB’s magical mystery batting mayhem
The inimitable South African batsman creates more magic in Indore
AB de Villiers has made no sense for most of his 33 years‚ and he delivered more magical mystery mayhem in Indore, India on Monday.
Through a combination of injury and choice, De Villiers missed the Royal Challengers Bangalore’s first two matches of 2017’s Indian Premier League (IPL) and SA’s last 11 games.
The last time he picked up a bat in anger‚ in a One-Day Cup outing for the Titans against the Cobras on March 23‚ he was out second ball for a duck.
So De Villiers might have felt underdone as he walked to the crease six balls into Monday’s match against Kings XI Punjab.
If he did‚ it did not show.
De Villiers hit the first ball he faced backward of point for four and hammered the fifth flat and furious over extra cover for six.
He drilled an unbeaten 89 off 46 balls‚ hitting three sixes and nine fours‚ and infuriating coaches who put great store in telling their pupils to practise‚ practise‚ practise.
If that is what not playing can do for your game perhaps cricketers should step across the boundary as rarely as possible.
But not all players are De Villiers. Not even Hashim Amla‚ whose 58 not out off 38 balls with four fours and three sixes was also scored in Monday’s match and guided the Kings XI to victory by eight wickets with 33 balls remaining.
That did not stop De Villiers from grabbing every headline going‚ and from easily topping the list of achievements by SA’s players after the tournament’s first eight games.
The only other South African batting highlight was David Miller’s 30 not out that helped Kings XI beat Pune by six wickets on Saturday.