Proteas

Batting at No 3 'works' for AB

2017-10-27 12:24
AB de Villiers (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - AB de Villiers said batting at No 3 "works" for him as he struck a quick-fire 49 to help the Proteas beat Bangladesh in the first T20I in Bloemfontein on Friday.

De Villiers scored his runs off only 27 balls and shared in a partnership of 79 with Quinton de Kock that set the platform for the home team to post a formidable total of 195/4, with Proteas eventually winning by 20 runs.

The 33-year-old only averages 26 in 77 T20I games, which is low considering De Villiers' batting ability.

One of the reasons for his low average is being shifted up and down the batting order.

READ: Proteas: Now fix AB at No 3, please!

Coming in after the fall of the opener Amla on Thursday, De Villiers said after the game that slotting in at No 3 works for him.

"It works for me, especially coming in within the first six overs; you can really capitalise on it," said the former Proteas skipper.

"I believe in sitting on the sidelines assessing as much as I can, watching closely; seeing what shots were working, whether it is taking turn.

"When I came out, Quinny (Quinton de Kock) told me there was quite a bit of pace and bounce in the wicket, which is something we really enjoy.

"The great thing about coming in early is that you can set yourself a foundation and then really let go, which I didn't do this time, which was disappointing."

De Villiers credits his off-season preparations for his blistering form for the Proteas against Bangladesh.

"I've worked hard this off-season by getting the basics in place again and I'm not somebody who works on too many shots," he said.

"I prefer to watch the ball, let it come to me and try and expose areas where the opposition are weak.

"I done a lot of gym work and tried to get fit again and I worked at the University of Pretoria where there were a lot of throws and spin."

With crucial series against India and Australia looming this summer, the Proteas will undoubtedly be boosted by De Villiers' impressive form.

"I know my game pretty well, I needed to work on a few technical errors - just trigger and timing - which I got right," he said.

"It clicked after my off-season in the Benoni four-day game, where the Titans played against the Warriors, something clicked there and I'm moving really well at the crease. I think the off-season paid off."

The Proteas lead the two-match T20I series 1-0, with the final match getting underway on Sunday (14:30).

Read more on:    proteas  |  ab de villiers  |  cricket
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