De Villiers: Winning World Cup no longer my ultimate goal

AB de Villiers ultimate goal no longer win World Cup South Africa cricket

AB de Villiers: “I feel it will be nice to win it, it’ll be a bonus, but if I don’t, it’s not going to define my career”

Image courtesy of: Zimbio

South Africa batsman AB de Villiers has had a change of heart when it comes to his ultimate goal of winning a World Cup.

In the past, De Villiers made it clear that he was determined to help the Proteas taste World Cup glory for the very first time in history.

He even went as far as skipping a majority of South Africa’s Test series in 2017 in order to focus on his limited overs career.

However, with the 2019 World Cup fast approaching, the 34-year-old, who is currently representing the Royal Challengers Bangalore in the Indian Premier League (IPL), no longer has the same vision.

“I’m taking it one game at a time,” he was quoted as saying by the International Cricket Council (ICC) website. “My ultimate dream is not to win a World Cup. I’ve changed my mindset. I feel it will be nice to win it, it’ll be a bonus, but if I don’t, it’s not going to define my career.

“I’ve committed to all three formats last season and I loved every second of it. I’ll take it one game at a time from here on.”

In the 2015 World Cup, South Africa managed to reach the semi-finals before having their hearts broken by New Zealand, who went on to triumph off the penultimate ball of the match.

De Villiers also vacated the ODI captaincy in August and his childhood friend and long-time teammate Faf du Plessis was named his successor. Du Plessis now captains South Africa in all three formats.

“I have known Faf for many years. He was captain of the primary school when I played with him,” De Villiers said. “He has always been a good leader and I see a lot of good years coming from Faf. He has already done fantastic things and I am seeing more to come.”

Meanwhile, De Villiers is enjoying his time in the IPL and admitted that he is big fan of Virat Kohli’s captaincy.

“The true judge of a good captain is when you don’t perform well and still do a good job of leading a side,” he said about Kohli. “He’s come through with flying colours when it comes to that. He’s still putting in a lot of effort and energy into the team, into preparing us and keeping energy during training sessions. That’s the characteristic of a true captain and a really good leader.”

De Villiers’ compatriot Heinrich Klaasen is also playing in the IPL as he was signed by the Rajasthan Royals as a replacement for Steve Smith, who was barred from taking part in the ongoing season of the tournament due to his involvement in a ball tampering scandal that stunned the cricketing community. Smith also stepped down as the Royals’ captain.

Even though Klaasen has made scores of 7 and 0 in the two games he has played thus far, De Villiers is confident the 26-year-old will make his presence felt, like he did during the recent limited overs series against India.

“Klaasen’s a fantastic player. I worked with him in the off season and I actually got a few tips from him,” De Villiers said. “He has a lot to offer and he will have a fantastic career. It didn’t start well for him in the first two games that he played, but if he is backed, he’s definitely going to come through.”

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