I made a few captaincy errors, says AB de Villiers

Category : News

South Africa skipper AB de Villiers today said that he made a few captaincy errors that might have helped Pakistan to snatch a thrilling win from the jaws of defeat in the opening Group 2 Super Eights match of the ICC World Twenty20 here.

Chasing 133 for six set by South Africa, Pakistan were tottering at 76 for seven at one stage before Umar Gul played a 17-ball 32-run cameo. Gul along with with Umar Akmal added 49 runs off just 27 balls for the eighth wicket to pull off the sensational win.

And de Villiers said that South Africa lost the plot in the final few overs after spinners Robin Peterson (2/15) and Johan Botha (1/10) bowled brilliantly to set it up for the Proteas.

“It was great game of cricket. I’m proud of the way we fought back. We lost it in the last five overs,” he said.

“Captaincy wise one or two errors there, but I’m proud of the boys,” de Villiers said referring to his decision to under bowl Peterson and Botha.

Pakistan captain Mohammad Hafeez was delighted with Gul’s effort with the bat and said every member of the side is trying to contribute in one or the other way, which augurs well for his side.

“The boys played great cricket. We played a couple of bad shots but it was a great team effort,” Hafeez said.

“I knew that Gul could hit it hard. This is a good sign that everybody is contributing. We did well to restrict South Africa but in the end Pakistan was lucky to get this (win),” he added.

Gul, who surprisingly won the Man-of-the-Match award for his batting today, thanked his coaches for his match-winning effort.

“It was a very good knock. I must thank all my coaches.”

Source: Indian Express – September 28, 2012

De Villiers steers South Africa to victory over Sri Lanka in seven-over encounter

Category : News

South Africa thrashed World Twenty20 hosts Sri Lanka in Hambantota after a rain delay reduced their Group C showdown to a seven-overs-a-side match.

Captain AB de Villiers crunched 30 from 13 balls in South Africa’s 78 for four and Sri Lanka never threatened to go close to that imposing total, limping instead to 46 for five.

Fortunately, given it would have been a cruel way to go out, today’s match only determined which of the two teams would finish top of the group, not which would go through to the Super Eight stage. Both were already assured of advancing, after wins over Zimbabwe.

South Africa lost Richard Levi to the fourth ball of the innings, to a brilliant diving catch by Dilshan Munaweera off the bowling of Nuwan Kulasekara, before Hashim Amla clubbed three boundaries over the infield to make a swift 16.

Amla was stumped by Kumar Sangakkara off Rangana Herath, and that brought De Villiers to the batting strip.

Angelo Matthews briefly clamped the brakes on with a tidy fourth over, but Herath then began to take punishment as De Villiers seized the initiative.

A swept four from the first ball of the fifth over by the skipper was followed by a vicious punch over the ropes for six.

De Villiers fell when Jeevas Mendis showed safe hands at mid-off to give Lasith Malinga a wicket, having been taken for 14 runs in the preceding five deliveries by the same batsman.

On 65 for three going into the final over, South Africa lost Faf du Plessis but JP Duminy played a clever scoop shot to the boundary from the fifth ball before drilling a straight six to end the innings.

Tillakaratne Dilshan fell in the first over of Sri Lanka’s reply, brilliantly run out by wicketkeeper De Villiers.

Mahela Jayawardene had struggled to get the ball away so it was perhaps to Sri Lanka’s advantage that he was dismissed for four at the end of the second over.

Yet at eight for two, the home side already looked to be batting in a lost cause.

They rode their luck when Albie Morkel dropped a steepler to hand Sangakkara a life.

Perera and Dilshan Munaweera perished when hitting out in the closing two overs, Sri Lanka’s hopes long over.

Source: Mail Online – September 22, 2012

De Villiers, Jayawardene marvel at ageless Kallis

Category : News

South Africa captain AB de Villiers and his Sri Lankan counterpart Mahela Jayawardene marvelled at the ageless Jacques Kallis, describing the 36-year-old as the best allrounder of his era.

Kallis returned career-best figures of four for 15 to take the man of the match award as South Africa thrashed Zimbabwe by 10 wickets on Thursday.

“Jacques is an amazing player, one of a kind. Obviously I’ve no idea how he keeps doing it,” de Villiers said after South Africa’s comprehensive victory in their opening match of the Twenty20 World Cup.

“I am jealous at what he gets right at this old age, I can’t think of myself doing that at that age.

“He is a wonderful player and we are grateful to have him in the squad.”

Kallis, who made his test debut in 1995, has scored more than 10,000 runs and taken over 200 wickets in both tests and the 50-over format.

He is as successful in the shortest T20 format of the game and Jayawardene has no qualms in terming him as the greatest allrounder of his generation.

“I don’t think anyone would disagree that Jacques would be the best allrounder in our generation in all forms of the game,” Jayawardene said.

“He’s improving everyday and that’s because of the hunger that he has and the competitive edge. He didn’t show any complacency when he went out against Zimbabwe, the intensity was the same.

“That’s a quality that every young cricketer should have. Jacques is a great opponent and that level of players, that’s what they want to do.

“They don’t want to be remembered as players who used to be brilliant, not so any more but they want to be at the top as long as they play.”

Source: Reuters – September 21, 2012