IPL 2024
AB de Villiers Open to Mentorship Role At RCB: A Glance At His Potential Return
By CricShots - May 23, 2024 4:48 pm
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AB De Villiers, the South African cricketing legend, has expressed openness to rejoining his former IPL team, the Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB), albeit in a different capacity. Despite RCB’s prolonged trophy drought, which continued in IPL 2024 after their loss to the Rajasthan Royals in the eliminator, the allure of the franchise remains strong.

Royal Challengers Bengaluru (RCB) players

Throughout its history, RCB has consistently attracted marquee players to its ranks, with Virat Kohli being the sole constant amidst changing line-ups. Names like Chris Gayle, Shane Watson, Yuvraj Singh, Travis Head, Quinton De Kock, and Mitchell Starc have graced the RCB roster over the past 16 years.

Among these luminaries, AB De Villiers stands out as a quintessential figure synonymous with the RCB franchise, second only to Virat Kohli. The on-field chemistry and off-field camaraderie between Kohli and De Villiers have become iconic symbols of the team’s spirit.

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AB de Villiers’ decade-long association with RCB saw him play 157 matches, amassing 4522 runs with an impressive strike rate of 158. Following his retirement from the IPL in November 2021, fans have eagerly anticipated his return to the RCB fold, albeit in a mentoring or coaching role.

“I think it will be unlikely for me not to feature there at some stage,” AB de Villiers stated in an exclusive conversation with News18 Cricketnext. However, he remained cautious about making definitive commitments, citing the unpredictability of life’s transitions.

de villiers
AB de Villiers

“I’m not 100 per cent sure where I’m going to be in five years from now. Where I’m at in my life now is a bit of a transitional phase from cricket to a father, to a bit of business, to a bit of commentating, to a bit of appearances and sponsorship deals. I’m just trying to sort of do that transfer and see what it’s like,” he elaborated.

While AB de Villiers refrained from a categorical affirmation of returning to RCB, he emphasized his willingness to explore opportunities as they arise.

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“And then as life moves on, I think opportunities will open up. I’m not going to shut any doors. I’m not opening any doors up as of yet because I don’t think it’s ripe yet,” he explained. “But when that time comes around and it feels right in my heart and also the desire from the franchise is still there at that time, then great. I think those discussions will take place. But it’s impossible to commit to anything now,” he added.

In 2023, AB De Villiers was inducted into the RCB Hall of Fame, commemorating his invaluable contributions to the team from 2011 to 2021.