AB De Villiers says he lives for pressure situations
Proteas' captain relieved after his remarkable hundred sealed the ODI series against England.
When South African ODI skipper AB De Villiers walked into the crease, his side was tottering at 22/3 in the winner takes all clash at Cape Town. What transpired later was a mature century from De Villiers to completed a remarkable turnaround from being 0-2 to clinch the 5-match series.
In a free-wheeling chat with Sport24, the Number 1 ODI batsman in the world spoke about seizing the key moments in a high-pressure match. He shrugged off a below-par performance in the series and finally rose to the occasion when his team needed it.
A visibly relieved De Villiers said, “You live for those pressure moments. It’s taken me years to feel comfortable in pressure situations like that and I’m starting to feel like I really have good composure in those situations.”
Aiding in his endeavor was his long-time teammate Hashim Amla who contributed to the chase with a match-defining partnership for the fourth wicket. Even though Amla fell afterwards, the flamboyant batsman remained unbeaten in the end with a convincing display.
The 31-year old enthused, “That’s something I’m really proud of. The composure I had in a moment where I felt like the game was on the line. Hash and I had to make a play to get us back in the game and we’re very proud about that.”
Sending Rilee Rossouw ahead of him backfired
He revealed that both senior batsmen discussed the scenario and wanted to keep things simple in their approach. The audacious star added, “The chat was basically not to worry about the runs and just to make sure we got in and didn’t lose another wicket. It was a very positive chat. I felt that it was really important for us to take it 10 runs at a time and get to a 50-run partnership. We were prepared to put in the hard yards.”
The move to send in Rilee Rossouw ahead of him was also put under the scanner as the former perished through a poor shot. Backing Rossouw, De Villiers assured, “I like moving myself, down the order when we're chasing, I really like to be there at the end. And Rilee is very good against the new ball, he goes hard at it. I have no doubt in my mind that he will come good.”
The Proteas will be relieved as their premier batsman showed signs of regaining his touch after a woeful Test series. In a bid to prepare for the upcoming World T20, the action shifts to a 2-match T20I series which begins on Friday.