After missing out the two-match Test series against New Zealand with an elbow injury, which the Proteas won 1-0, AB de Villiers has now failed a fitness Test against the upcoming five-match ODI series against Australia. South Africa’s ODI captain who also missed the one-off ODI against Ireland will now miss the ODI series as well the three-match Test series in Australia starting on November 3.
In order to ensure that there are no further complications and to sort out the issue once and for all, AB de Villiers will undergo an elbow operation next week in a bid to be fit and available for future series. Faf du Plessis, who deputised in AB’s absence will continue as South Africa’s captain.
The Proteas ODI captain is likely to be out for six to eight weeks to recover from his operation,which rules him out of their crucial tour down-under to face Australia in three Tests which starts at Perth on November 3.
Proteas team manager, Dr Mohammed Moosajee said: “ AB de Villiers is still symptomatic and has not recovered from his elbow impingement injury which makes surgery the only long-term solution. We have tried the conservative management of rest, physio, rehab and cortisone infiltration into the elbow, but that has not yielded the results that we would have liked. He will have surgery to the elbow early next week and the target is to hopefully have him back for the Sri Lankan home series over the Christmas period.”
A century from Temba Bavuma on ODI debut and four wickets from part-time spinner JP Duminy ensured that the Proteas didn’t miss AB in the one-off ODI against Ireland which the hosts won by 206 runs on Sunday, however, his absence for the tour to Australia will be a huge blow.
Rilee Rossouw will retain his place in the squad to take on Australia in the five-match ODI series which begins on September 30.