AB de Villiers has yet to make up his mind whether to continue playing Test cricket, according to Proteas coach Russell Domingo.
The star batsman has been out of action since June with an elbow injury, and a debate has raged over the composition of the team when he returns to claim his No 4 slot.
But it may not be as simple as that.
‘We need to sit down with him and plan his future,’ said Domingo. ‘AB has got to make the decision about whether he is available and the selectors have got to make the decision whether he plays. He has obviously got to make some decision about his future in cricket.’
It is understood he is preparing to meet management to discuss his role in the side when he completes his comeback from injury.
Proteas captain Faf du Plessis, who took over the leadership when De Villiers stepped down in December, said: ‘I’m not sure how AB will feel in terms of Test cricket, so we will have to see. I am hoping he decides to play Tests for us. He is obviously a world-class batter and I, as a captain, would love to have him as a leader in our team, and obviously as a batter. He is a fantastic player.’
De Villiers has previously hinted that he is finding the pressure of playing all three formats difficult, especially as he is committed to outside events such as the IPL and Caribbean Premier League. He is also eager to play the Big Bash.
During the series against England last January, he said: For two or three years I’ve been searching for the right answers to play a little less cricket in one way or another, to keep myself fresh and enjoying the game.
‘Every now and then I find I am not enjoying myself as much as I should be.’
Regardless of the outcome of the talks with management, De Villiers would still lead the ODI side.
He is due to play a List A match for Northerns next Sunday and, if all goes well, he will play in the third T20 against Sri Lanka before assuming the captaincy ahead of the ODIs. His long-term plan is to take the team to the Champions Trophy and ultimately, the 2019 World Cup.
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