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AB DE VILLIERS REMAINS IN THE PROTEAS’ DISCUSSIONS, CONFIRMS COACH MARK BOUCHER

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Proteas coach Mark Boucher says AB de Villiers will remain part of the team selection discussion “when he is playing good cricket”.

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Speaking on a Zoom press conference call on Thursday, Boucher admitted that De Villiers was in line for a possible return to the international fold immediately prior to the Covid-19 lockdown in March, but those discussions had to be put on hold.

De Villiers had called time on his career in 2018 after 114 Tests, 228 ODIs and 78 T20Is for the Proteas.

However, in 2019 there were already suggestions he was mulling a U-turn on his decision ahead of that year’s Cricket World Cup in England.

Sadly for the Proteas’ cause, that didn’t materialise and the team went on to struggle without their star batsman at the tournament.

“AB was in discussions before Covid, he is always in discussions when he is playing good cricket, to be honest with you,” Boucher said.

“Going forward I haven’t had a discussion with him at all, he has been playing in the IPL. He had a very good IPL too.”

De Villiers did indeed have a superb IPL tournament this year, scoring 454 runs for the Bangalore Royal Challengers in his 15 matches. That was enough to place De Villiers 10th in the total run-scorers list, but wasn’t enough to help his team to anything better than a fourth place in the final standings.

While De Villiers has his hands full at present juggling baby duties after becoming a father for the first time last week, Boucher is busy preparing the Proteas for their 3-match T20 and 2-match ODI series against England.

The first T20 is scheduled for Friday, November 27 at Newlands.

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Written by Garrin Lambley

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