There was a lot of speculation about AB de Villiers’s fitness and whether he would take the field for the Royal Challengers Bangalore or not. As Shane Watson won the toss and opted to bat first against the Kings XI Punjab at the Holkar stadium in Indore, he revealed that de Villiers was fully fit and take the field in place of the out of sorts Chris Gayle.
RCB were in all sorts of trouble as they kept losing wickets at regular intervals and the economy rate below 5 runs per over. AB de Villiers was unfortunate to keep losing partners at the other end and thus he was not able to get going from the very beginning. Despite that, he got the occasional boundary and kept his strike rate above 100. It was not until the 17th over of the match we got to witness ABD’s masterclass.
It began in the 17th over as he smashed two sixes off Marcus Stoinis’s bowling. He did not spare the bowlers coming in after that. Sandeep Sharma who had conceded only 7 runs in three overs was bruised and battered for 19 runs in his final over and the cherry on the top was provided with two sixes of the final two deliveries of the innings off Mohit Sharma’s bowling. He ended with 89 in 46 balls and helped RCB reach a total of 146.
Here is how the world reacted to his innings:
ABD ABD ABD...!!! If I was a commentator I'd do a mic drop and enjoy the show ... No words can describe @ABdeVilliers17....wow!!— Morne Morkel (@mornemorkel65) April 10, 2017
@ABdeVilliers17 you are ridiculous!! 51 off 16 and the falling over off drive for 6— simon hughes (@theanalyst) April 10, 2017
Best in the business IMO @ABdeVilliers17 that is just madness what did I miss in the 1st half that 148/4— Alex Tudor (@alextudorcoach) April 10, 2017
Boooooom seriously amazing striking @ABdeVilliers17 best in the business— David Warner (@davidwarner31) April 10, 2017
You may never be able to bat like ABDV...but you can always learn important lessons in humility from the Big Man. Role model. Respect.— Aakash Chopra (@cricketaakash) April 10, 2017