De Villiers to retire from Test cricket?

De Villiers opted not to represent South Africa in a majority of their Test assignments in 2017

Image courtesy of: Zimbio

AB de Villiers is likely to announce his retirement from Test cricket after he meets with Cricket South Africa in August, according to reports.

On Monday, De Villiers, who captains South Africa in ODIs, revealed that he would be holding discussions with the board about his international future.

It is understood that the 33-year-old wanted to walk away from the longest format late last year, but Cricket South Africa managed to convince him to defer his decision by allowing him to take a break from Test cricket for the majority of 2017.

One of the reasons why De Villiers allegedly wants to retire from Test cricket has to do with the fact that he is concerned about who will take charge of the Proteas once Russell Domingo’s tenure as head coach comes to an end after the ongoing tour of England.

According to sources, Domingo has not re-applied for the position, meaning that someone else will take over the role.

However, insiders have also claimed that De Villiers wanted to end his Test career after sustaining an elbow injury that ruled him out of Test series towards the latter half of last year and the first few months of 2017.

“It’s my belief that AB was looking to walk away from the Test game last year at some point, but has been encouraged to carry on by CSA,” former South Africa captain Graeme Smith wrote in his column for The Independent. “His personal prerogative is ensuring he does all he can to add as much longevity to his international career as possible, as well as taking in to account the harsh realities of touring such as the amount of travel involved, and the toll that takes on your body.

“AB has already made huge sacrifices for South African cricket, over such a long period of time, and with the next ICC World Cup just two years away, it’s likely that he is targeting that tournament as a swansong to his already illustrious career at the top level. What has AB de Villiers got to prove to anyone? He’s a star, and those players are often expected to be available all of the time no matter what the consequences might be personally.”

While Smith also recommended that De Villiers¬†“step away from the captaincy”, the Pretoria native doesn’t seem to have any plans to do so.

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