• Gibbs: We are always up there irrespective of AB

    Former batsman Herschelle Gibbs has insisted South Africa’s middle order will cope without ex-captain AB de Villiers at the World Cup in the United Kingdom later this year.

    De Villiers retired from international cricket last year – and is currently playing for the Lahore Qalandars in the Pakistan Super League. The Proteas, meanwhile, are involved in an ongoing Test series against Sri Lanka.

    ‘We, South Africa, are always up there irrespective of AB. We have got Faf du Plessis and Quinton de Kock. The only issue for South Africa is not having an all-rounder,’ Gibbs was quoted as saying by the Deccan Chronicle.

    The 44-year-old Gibbs echoed former teammate Shaun Pollock’s sentiment that England and India are among the favourites to clinch the 2019 World Cup title.

    ‘It is always wide open. The two standout contenders will be England and India. But, who is going to make the other two places for the semi-finals? It is difficult to say,’ added Gibbs.

    ‘A lot depends on the weather in England. The bowling attacks will all play a part in the tournament.’

    The English and the Proteas will open the World Cup at The Oval in London on 30 May. All 10 teams will play each other in a round-robin format – and the top four will qualify for the semi-finals.

    The final will be played at Lord’s on 14 July.

    Photo: Getty

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