Graeme Smith predicts India’s future after Virat Kohli
There are also quality players there but it’s like taking Virat Kohli out of the Indian team.
Updated - May 30, 2018 2:38 pm
AB de Villiers’s ruthless knock in the 11th edition of the IPL gave the South African fans a ray of hope before the begin of the 2019 World Cup in England. After having gone through a series of injuries the right-hander’s return to full fitness was a positive for the Proteas. In the 12 games that the right-hander has played this season, he has scored 480 runs at an average of 53.33 which is his highest in IPL.
Having played such exceptional innings, the former South African skipper shocked the entire world with the announcement of his retirement from all forms of International Cricket. For the South African skipper Faf du Plessis, it would be too big a shoe to fill in. The 34-year-old’s audacious batting style and impeccable fielding have helped him get many accolades in International cricket.
A huge void to fill for the national team:
Former South African skipper turned commentator Graeme Smith said “I thought definitely he would retire after the 2019 World Cup. But when he made his comeback and did so well in the home summer in South Africa, had a really good IPL, I didn’t even think about it,”
“To lose a player like AB, he’s irreplaceable. There are also quality players there but it’s like taking Virat Kohli out of the Indian team. SA lose an X-factor player, who can single-handedly win you a game,” Smith added the comparison to show the void left by the right-hander in the South African setup.
However, Smith was well aware of how tough it was for the right-hander to continuously travel and play cricket worldwide for close to 9 months a year. Further, injuries took a huge toll on how de Villiers’ mind functioned with the national team.
“The guy has played international cricket for around 15 years… More than anything he has the right to decide when he’s had enough. He will have his own reasons for that, you got to respect that,” Smith concluded by lauding the efforts of the right-handed batsman.