Former South African captain AB de Villiers opened up on his decision to retire from all forms of cricket and opting out of the mega IPL auctions which is scheduled to take place in the month of February. “Cricketing wise, it has been coming for quite some time, it’s always been about enjoyment for me. And the minute where I felt the difficulty of travelling and being there at the IPL for two and half to three months a year, specifically with this one that was spilt into two, bubbles and this and that made things very complicated with regards to cricket and the enjoyment thereof,” said de Villiers in a chat with TimesLive.
Stressing on the fact that, he always played the game because he enjoyed it, de Villiers said that he has never been the guy who would push every single bit of his energy on his cricketing skills. “I found myself on the park where scoring runs and doing well for the team didn’t really match with everything that goes with it anymore and that is where the balance started leading towards hanging my gloves up. I have never been the guy who is going to push every single bit of energy of my ability and my cricketing skill, I have always played for the enjoyment of the game. And the minute that sort of started going down, I knew it was time for me to move on,” de Villiers added.
De Villiers, who last played for South Africa in the Johannesburg Test against Australia in March 2018 played a season in Big Bash League for Brisbane Heat and was a regular feature in the Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) outfit till the 2021 edition. He didn't have a great season with the bat as he scored 313 runs in 15 games at an average of 31.3, which was his lowest since 2017. However, he did end his career as the 6th highest run-getter in the league with 5162 runs to his name in 184 games including three centuries and 40 fifties. AB de Villiers shocked the cricketing world by the sudden announcement of his retirement from the game on November 19, 2021. De Villiers, who was touted to be one of the sureshot retentions by Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) ahead of the mega auction for the 2022 edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) said that the flame of enthusiasm for the game didn't burn that brightly and was the right time to step aside.