New Delhi — SA stalwarts AB de Villiers and Dale Steyn still have plenty to offer at this year’s Indian Premier League (IPL) despite their recent lack of involvement in top-level cricket, says Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) team director Mike Hesson.

De Villiers, 36, quit international cricket in 2018 but plays in Twenty20 leagues in SA and Australia. He was on the winning team in an experimental three-team tournament in July.

“Only a matter of weeks ago he took part in a match in SA, and once again he was a standout player, having just come out of his living room. So that certainly showed the quality of player he is,” Hesson said.

“He’s had very, very good franchise tournaments around the world the past 12 months. He’s in good touch.

“Physically, he’s feeling good and refreshed. Once again, he’s one of the few in the group that are absolutely champing at the bit to get into training.”

Fast bowler Steyn, who quit Tests in 2019 to prolong his limited overs career, has played three Twenty20 International matches in 2020 in addition to his stint in the Pakistan Super League.

“He’s developing his game,” former New Zealand head coach Hesson said of the 37-year-old.

“We saw some different deliveries that he’s been able to develop over the past six months. So he’s certainly not ready to retire yet, certainly very keen to make a contribution this IPL.”

This year’s IPL will be played in the UAE from September 19.


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