Durban - As if things weren’t going badly enough for the Proteas on the field in the first Test against England, they have now also had to extinguish rumours surrounding the international future of star player AB de Villiers.
Reports had surfaced over the weekend suggesting that De Villiers was considering retiring from international cricket, but the 31-year-old was quick to dispel those rumours on Monday morning.
And while he appears to be going nowhere for now, it seems that De Villiers’ workload will be looked at closely in the coming months.
“When any international cricketer plays for 10 or more years there is always a concern ... what happens when they stop playing? We went through it with (Graeme) Smith, with Jacques Kallis ... even with a Mark Boucher, even though in his case it was unfortunate circumstance,” Proteas team manager Mohammad Moosajee said after Monday’s play.
“So AB is in constant contact with the head coach Russell Domingo as well as the selectors to find opportunities to give him a break from certain formats in the game. It’s no different to the discussions that would take place with any other senior players.”
Moosajee added that any discussions surrounding De Villiers’ Test future would only take place next year when new CSA contracts are discussed.
The Proteas do not play Test cricket again – after the current England series – until August 2016 when they host New Zealand.
“At this moment in time AB is still very much committed to playing for his country. Obviously it’s to look at the schedule for the coming 12 months and to find gaps in the fixture schedule where we can give him a break,” said Moosajee.
“We don’t have another Test series until the new season starts against New Zealand ... in August of next year.
“So that discussion for the following year will probably take place with the new contracts announced which is sometime in May ... but certainly until the end of the season AB is committed to play all forms.”