One of T20’s real superstars, AB de Villiers, played a vintage innings against Delhi on Tuesday that was a reminder of what the great man can do. He’ll now be eyeing up a first-ever IPL win for himself and RCB.
Vintage de Villiers
RCB were heading for a mediocre first innings total against DC on Tuesday when AB de Viliers arrived at the crease.
None of Virat Kohli, Devdutt Padikkal or Glenn Maxwell had got going.
But at the change of innings, RCB had posted 171-5 thanks to absolutely brilliant batting from de Villiers. He played some beautiful shots and some truly brutal ones, particularly destructive against Marcus Stoinis in the final over.
He hit three fours and five sixes to get to 75 off just 42 deliveries in what was one of the IPL’s best knocks to date this year. Ultimately his superb innings was the difference between the two sides as RCB hung on to win by just one run.
As he explained at the end of the game when picking up the man-of-the-match award:
“You can’t go into the game feeling fatigued. I’ve really done some work at home and we have treadmills in the room. I’ve done all the work and now it’s all about being as fresh as I can when I go out to bat.”
De Villiers, the Legend
De Villiers is one of the IPL’s true legends.
That was his 40th IPL fifty in 175 matches and it’s worth remembering that he often bats at four or five, making that record even more impressive.
De Villiers has scored 5053 IPL runs including three centuries and is averaging 41.08 over his long career, truly remarkable numbers.
This season he has 204 runs at an average of 68 and has the extra responsibility of also keeping wicket.
This was the second time this season de Villiers has top scored for RCB.
AB and RCB search for elusive title
But what de Villiers doesn’t have is an IPL title.
He’s been at RCB for the vast majority of his IPL career but lost the final against SRH a few years ago, his best opportunity so far to be an IPL winner.
With RCB starting so well and arguably having the best-balanced squad they’ve had in years, this could be their best chance yet.
The smart money is on de Villiers playing a big part in that if they do go on to win their maiden title.