Former Proteas all-rounder Brian McMillan is the latest cricket personality to endorse batsman AB de Villiers’ potential return to international cricket.
De Villiers retired from Test, ODI and T20I competition in 2018 – and has since played domestic cricket for the Royal Challengers Bangalore in the Indian Premier League, Lahore Qalandars in the Pakistan Super League, Brisbane Heat in Australia’s Big Bash League and others.
He recently suggested coming out intentional retirement to compete for a berth in South Africa’s squad for the T20 World Cup in Australia later this year. Head coach Mark Boucher, meanwhile, has reiterated a willingness to accommodate De Villiers.
‘I would absolutely be in favour of AB making a comeback to South Africa’s T20I side with the T20 World Cup in mind. It would be fantastic to see De Villiers in the green and gold again and I believe that we need to get him back as quickly as possible,’ McMillan told Sport24 – and effectively echoed former team-mate Jonty Rhodes’ sentiment.
‘For me, the 36-year-old is one of the greatest ever cricketers from South Africa. What I like most about him is his attitude, performances and winning way. Everything about De Villiers epitomises class and his winning way is rounded off with enjoyment.’
Cricket South Africa interim director of cricket Graeme Smith will likely be appointed on a full-time basis later this month. Smith accepted the role in an acting capacity late last year due to commentary commitments in the Indian Premier League. The start of the IPL, however, has been delayed as a preventative measure against the spread of the coronavirus pandemic.
‘I’m not quite sure what Smith has done behind the scenes since he was officially appointed as director of cricket in December, but I’m sure he has added huge value in terms of winning, performance and growing South African cricket as a brand,’ added McMillan.
‘Smith was a very successful captain for South Africa for quite a few years and there are certain elements in business, administration and sport that coincide. One thing is certain, the grassroots – club and provincial cricket – has to be strengthened and funded in order for this to happen.’
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