Former South African batter AB de Villiers has confirmed that he will be returning to the Indian Premier League (IPL) in 2023.
AB de Villiers Set to Return to IPL 2023
The 38-year-old, who played for Royal Challengers Bangalore, had announced his retirement from the cash-rich tournament in November last year.
However, Virat Kohli dropped a major hint on de Villiers earlier this month and said that he would be reuniting with the Bangalore-based franchise.
Now, the former South Africa skipper himself confirmed that he will “love to return to my second hometown” next year and once again soak in all the love from a packed Chinnaswamy Stadium.
“I am glad that Virat’s confirmed it,” de Villiers told VUSport. The former South Africa captain said he would love to return to witness the Chinnaswamy stadium (RCB’s home ground in Bangalore) in full capacity.
“To be honest, we haven’t decided anything on it yet but I will be around the IPL next year, I am missing it, don’t know in which capacity yet.
I have heard that there might be some games in Bangalore next year and I would like to visit my second home and watch the full capacity Chinnaswamy stadium – I am looking forward to it,” de Villiers added.
de Villiers, who last played for RCB in IPL 2021, decided not to return to the cash-rich league this year. Kohli, who too decided to step down as RCB captain ahead of this season, said he misses him a lot and expects him to join RCB in some capacity soon.
“I will definitely be around the IPL next year. I would love to return to my second hometown,” de Villiers told VUSport.
“I will be around RCB next year, I am missing it, don’t know in which capacity but I would like to visit my second home which is Chinnaswamy stadium — I am looking forward to it,” said de Villiers, who was included in RCB Hall of Fame a few days back along with West Indies’ Chris Gayle.
De Villiers, considered by many as one of the greatest white-ball cricketers with 9,577 runs in 228 One-day International matches, is the first South African batter to score a double century in Tests when he blasted 217 against India in April 2008.
One of the most destructive batters in ODIs, de Villiers in January 2018 scored both the fastest fifty and the fastest century by a batsman, off 16 balls and 31 balls respectively.
He joined the Royal Challengers Bangalore in the inaugural year in 2008 and is sixth on the list of players with the most runs scored in IPL with 5,162 runs from 170 innings at an average of 38.70 and a strike rate of 151.68.
“I miss him a lot. I speak to him regularly, quite regularly. He keeps messaging me. He was in the US recently watching golf. Augusta Masters is what I heard it was called.
So he told me he was there experiencing it with his friends and family. So we stay in touch and he’s very keenly watching RCB and hopefully will be here next year in some capacity,” Kohli had told Danish Sait earlier.
Royal Challengers Bangalore qualified for the IPL 2022 playoffs after Mumbai Indians defeated Delhi Capitals in their final league match.
The Faf du Plessis-led side will meet Lucknow Super Giants in the Eliminator on May 25 at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata. Meanwhile, Gujarat Titans will play Rajasthan Royals in Qualifier 1 on May 24 at the same venue.
Qualifier 2 and final are scheduled for May 27 and 29 respectively at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahemdabad.