Being criticised for picking and choosing games also played a role in me retiring: AB de Villiers

De Villiers' retirement decision stunned the fraternity last year.

AB de Villiers
AB de Villiers. (Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Images)

AB de Villiers announcing his retirement from international cricket was one of the major happenings in the cricketing fraternity in 2018. He had a great Indian Premier League (IPL) season prior to that and had made a comeback in January itself with an aim to play the World Cup for South Africa in 2019. But his retirement stunned many and the man himself has now revealed that being criticised for picking and choosing games to play was one of the reasons of him retiring.

De Villiers had missed a major part of the cricketing action in 2017 due to various reasons. There were a lot of discussions among the board officials as well regarding him not playing a few series during that period. And after a lot of speculations around the dynamic batsman made a comeback in the Test series against India stating that he will play all the formats for South Africa.


Moreover, he played a crucial role in their Test series victory over India and Australia. AB de Villiers was at his peak it felt then and he replicated a similar kind of form in the IPL as well.

It’s quite arrogant to do something like that

” For the last three years of my career, I was labelled as a guy who is picking and choosing when I was playing and when not. So I got quite a lot of criticism from back home, which also played a role in me retiring. And it was difficult for me to then go ‘hey, but I’ll still play the World Cup‘. It’s that picking and choosing thing again, and it’s quite arrogant to do something like that,” De Villiers said while speaking to Gaurav Kapur in Breakfast with Champions.

Meanwhile, one of South Africa’s most complete batsman also cleared that it was always about the team first for him and felt cornered by all the expectation and criticism. “I felt cornered. It’s always been about the team, it’s never been about myself. But I found myself in a position where I had to make a decision where it’s going to look like I’m just thinking about myself,” AB de Villiers further added.

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