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Cricket 18.5.2017 09:44 am

Don’t you worry about my form, says AB de Villiers

AB de Villiers: cool about his form. Photo: Lefty Shivambu/Gallo Images.

AB de Villiers: cool about his form. Photo: Lefty Shivambu/Gallo Images.

The Proteas one-day skipper hardly set this year’s IPL alight but insists he’s hitting the ball well. Also, where should he bat?

AB de Villiers is not concerned about his form going into the ICC Champions Trophy.

The Proteas one-day skipper had a distinctly lukewarm campaign in the Indian Premier League (IPL), scoring only one fifty in 9 innings.

“I’m not worried. I hope others also aren’t worried,” said De Villiers.

Also read: How the Proteas will deal with their baby boom

“I had a few decent knocks. It was split up nicely across the tournament. I made a fifty early on and then another good score later on.”

Sceptics might find those words hard to believe given the 33-year-old’s inconsistent scores but it must also be said he played in a Bangalore batting line-up that gradually badly lost confidence.

“I always felt in good form,” said De Villiers.

“I’m really not too worried, I’m really excited. I’m hitting the ball as well as ever. I think there are some good scores to come.”

South Africa’s middle-order dynamo also had some fans nervous over a troublesome back, a niggle that saw him sit out twice during the tournament.

But careful management by his IPL franchise means De Villiers is fit as a fiddle.

“My back’s 100%. I’ve worked really hard on that,” he said.

“It’s always been a bit of an issue, especially the past 7 or 8 years. I’m 33, it’s part and parcel of the game.”

Perhaps then the biggest issue is in which position will De Villiers have the biggest impact.

Given that English conditions are expected to see a few top order wickets fall early, the trick for the Proteas will be to carefully decide whether to use him earlier of later.

Not that De Villiers minds being a so-called floater in the batting order.

“The last while I’ve been batting at No 4,” he said.

“I’m very happy to move around the order. I always have been. I’m not a big stats man, so I won’t look at what my averages are in different positions. If it suits them team for me to bat 3 or 5, for example, I’ll do it.”

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