South African cricketing great AB de Villiers has announced his retirement from all forms of international cricket. The batting maestro and former captain’s decision to walk away from the game will come into effect immediately.
In a video posted on Twitter Wednesday evening (AEST), the 34-year-old thanked fans around the world for ongoing support throughout his career. The 123-Test star candidly admitted he was “tired” and “had his turn” playing at the highest level of the gentleman’s game.
“I have decided to retire from all international cricket with immediate effect,” AB de Villiers said on Wednesday. “After 114 Test matches, 228 ODI’s and 78 T20 Internationals, it is time for others to take over. I have had my turn, and to be honest, I am tired.
“This is a tough decision, I have thought long and hard about it and I’d like to retire while still playing decent cricket. After the fantastic series wins against India and Australia, now feels like the right time to step aside.”
Gobsmacked cricket fans and former players around the world shared their disbelief at the announcement on social media.
The explosive right-hander is by no means out of form on the field, sending fans around the world in awe just this month with an incredible outfield catch in the IPL.
But, despite not showing a glimpse of weakness in his impeccable technique and lust for runs, the Pretoria-born superstar says it’s time to pass the torch to the next generation of Proteas.
“It would not be right for me to pick and choose where, when and in what format I play for the Proteas,” he said
“For me, in the green and gold, it must be everything or nothing. I will always be grateful to the coaches and staff of Cricket South Africa for their support through all these years.
“The most important thank you goes out to all of my teammates throughout my career, I wouldn’t be half the player that I am without the support throughout the years.
“It’s not about earning more somewhere else, it’s about running out of gas and feeling that it is the right time to move on. Everything comes to an end. To the cricket fans around South Africa and the World, thank you for your kindness and generosity, and today, for your understanding.
“I have no plans to play overseas, in fact, I hope I can continue to be available for the Titans in domestic cricket. I will continue to be the biggest supporter of Faf du Plessis and the Proteas.”