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Ottis Gibson reckons AB de Villiers’ retirement is a blow to Proteas’ World Cup chances

De Villiers had a conversation with Gibson before making the retirement announcement.

Ottis Gibson
South African coach Ottis Gibson during the South African national cricket team training session. (Photo by Shaun Roy/Gallo Images/Getty Images)

A few days earlier, AB de Villiers shocked everyone when he announced retirement from all forms of cricket for South Africa. He last represented his nation in the controversially-marred Test series versus Australia back in March. The Pretoria-born cricketer cited tiredness as a reason behind his decision to hang his boots. However, he also mentioned that he will be ready to play in domestic tournaments for the Titans.

The Proteas will now play Sri Lanka in a Test, ODI and T20I series in July. Moreover, the ICC Cricket World Cup will be staged next year in England and Wales. To the dismay of the African nation, they won’t be having the services of the veteran in the mega event. Ottis Gibson, the head coach of South Africa, mentioned that De Villiers’ retirement is a massive blow to their chances in the prestigious championship.

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The big miss for world cricket

“He is one of the best players in the world. He could have made a huge difference in the World Cup and he knows that… he’s chosen to walk away from the game at this time and it is what it is. We’ll have to alter our plans obviously but it gives us enough time to do that,” Gibson was quoted as saying by Hindustan Times.

The former Windies cricketer also spoke about the privilege of watching de Villiers ply his trade in cricket. He also spoke about how the 34-year-old player called him in order to take valuable suggestions prior to taking the major call on his career.

“It’s disappointing for the country and world cricket that AB de Villiers isn’t playing cricket anymore. We had a conversation. He called me the morning before he made the announcement. We had a long conversation around whether he was making the right decision. He reckons he is. He has spoken to the people in his close circle,” the head coach added.

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