AB de Villiers is a rare breed of cricketer who enjoys equal success in all formats of the game and is inarguably in a league of his own as far as popularity is concerned. He remains grounded, despite innumerable achievements, and has thanked God for the talent given to him to entertain people.
In his recently published autobiography, AB- The Autobiography, the South African ODI and Test skipper, has opened up on several topics.
In a chapter in his book, de Villiers writes about the love and the humbleness he felt when the fans around the stadiums in India were chanting his name. “Above all, the chanting makes me feel humble and privileged and, of course, obliged to score some runs,”
In the following chapter AB wrote about his path from a small town in South Africa to all the Royal Challengers Bangalore fans chanting his name in the stadium.
“It is difficult for me to understand how someone from a relatively small town in rural South Africa can be so fortunate and so favoured that when he walks out to bat, or simply takes guard, in almost any cricket ground in India, he can be greeted by tens of thousands of happy people chanting his initials.”
“I am not arrogant, big-headed or self-important. I am simply grateful to God for giving me the talent to entertain people, for giving me the skill to hit a cricket ball in a way that excites people. I have wondered about these events and arrived at the conclusion that it remains His talent and His skill effectively being manifested through me. I genuinely feel so blessed to be following the path He has chosen for me,” writes the 32 year old.
“I wanted to be much better than that. I didn’t say anything to anyone — there was no point boasting or bragging. But quietly and privately, I promised myself I would become the best batsman in the world. That was my goal. Nothing less would suffice. I believed I had the potential and I wanted to be No.1.”
Finally, giving his opinions on Test cricket, de Villiers writes, “In my view, Test cricket will continue to be played for many decades to come, played in daylight hours, played with a red ball and played in white clothing. It will continue because it remains the preferred format of a strong group of spectators whose numbers are not declining and whose passion is not diminishing. I count myself a member of this audience and I will be watching Test cricket for many years after I stop playing.”