back icon


It's global cricketing issue to keep players inspired to play all formats: AB de Villiers

Last updated on 26 Jan 2023 | 12:37 PM
Follow Us
It's global cricketing issue to keep players inspired to play all formats: AB de Villiers

The former South Africa batter wants the cricket boards and players to have honest communication over the latter's preferred choice of formats

Former South Africa batter AB de Villiers feels it’s extremely difficult to keep players "inspired" to play all three formats in this era. The 38-year-old, who is known to be one of the most innovative players to have played the game, wants the cricket boards and cricketers to have honest communication over the latter's preferred choice of formats.

De Villiers, who shocked the cricketing world with his international retirement in 2018, said his playing career too could have been managed better. Three years later, he retired from all forms of cricket and is currently part of the SA20 commentary panel.

"That's a tough question. Because I don't want to be the guy to just say give up a format or two. And once again, it's a global cricketing issue at the moment to keep the players inspired to play all formats of the game for their countries," he told PTI.

Talking about having clear communication between players and boards, de Villiers said: "But I do think there's room with the various boards around the world to pinpoint players, to have community discussions and communication early on in players’ careers, to understand what they want to achieve, first of all, and secondly, where they fit in with regards to the cricket in their own country to represent the country internationally.

"But also to be happy to play leagues around the world. And to gain experience, it's invaluable. We spoke about it earlier, players like SKY (Suryakumar), Dewald Brevis and myself, the way we took our games to the next level, largely because of these leagues.

"So ultimately, that is what we want to achieve. If it's not achievable. And if there's a clear sign that a player is maybe a bit weak in one format, or is maybe not as inspired to achieve milestones to go a long way in one or two formats, then yes, but that communication needs to happen.

"And I think during my career communication could have been better from my side, but also from the Cricket South Africa side to make sure that we plan accordingly. So it comes down to communication.”

The inaugural edition of the SA20 league has currently taken an eight-day break to accommodate the ODI series betweens South Africa and England, highlighting the scheduling challenges faced by boards.

"I don't think it is (break) ideal to be honest. So difficult to get the scheduling right and keep everyone happy. We want to see countries take each other on. It is the ultimate form of viewership but with all these leagues the excitement is there and it is financially healthy.

"It is very difficult for the ICC and everyone to make sure that the scheduling benefits everyone. I honestly don't know what the answer is."

De Villiers also spoke about Indian players featuring in overseas leagues. He would want this to happen but understands why the BCCI doesn’t allow Indian players to outside and play in these competitions.

"I would love to see it happening very soon but you don't see Indian players being released for leagues around the world. So I don't know if that will ever change. And rightfully so. I mean, the BCCI has a very clear plan with the players, they want to win World Cups.

"They want to make sure the players have the exposure they need and obviously there's no league better than than the IPL. Once some of the leagues maybe knock on their door, you never know.”

(With inputs from PTI)

Related Article