The matchup between Delhi Daredevils and Royal Challengers Bangalore at Chinnaswamy was crucial as far as their journey in the ongoing edition of the IPL was concerned.
It was a must-win for both teams and AB de Villiers ensured that RCB had the last laugh after an intense contest with the bat and ball for almost 40 overs.
First, it was Rishabh Pant's innings of 85 which got the crowd buzzing at the Chinnaswamy. His quickfire knock ensured that Delhi reached a competitive target at the end.
Next, it was a stunner from Trent Boult at the boundary line to dismiss Virat Kohli which silenced the Chinnaswamy crowd. When all seemed lost, AB batted like a magician to help his team over the line in a crucial contest. The crowd thus was buzzing again as it witnessed special innings from a special player.
Speaking to batting coach Gary Kirsten after the game, ABD said: “I didn’t decide to be aggressive (from ball 1) to be honest. I did want to put the spinner under some pressure with the new ball as there was some turn with the new ball. I didn’t want to get out to the slip in a soft way, so I thought of trying and transferring some pressure on the spinner. And from there on it just kept going. I kept feeling good at the wicket and kept seeing the ball well. Never decided to be aggressive, just little moments in the game I felt I needed to capitalize on.”
Another moment in the game was the point where both ABD and Corey Anderson were almost stuck at the same end and there was a run out in the offing. Speaking of the situation, the South African said: “I didn’t think at that time that it was necessary to take a risk. It went straight to the fielder and I didn’t want to give them an opportunity for a direct hit. I saw him coming and he wasn’t going to turn out and so I started running and for some reason, he started running with me. It was just one of those things. I told him after that in the middle that there was absolutely nothing to discuss.”
Important to capitalise on crucial moments - @ABdeVilliers17#RCB batting coach Gary Kirsten quizzes #ABD on his match winning knock, the complicated single with Corey Anderson and the joy of playing in front of Chinnaswamy crowd - by @RajalArora— IndianPremierLeague (@IPL) April 22, 2018
AB de Villiers also thanked the crowd for the support and said that hopefully the team would win the trophy and bring a smile on their face this season. “It is a great ground to play cricket at. It is one of the best venues I have played at. This crowd is very special and they love the cricket that we play and hopefully we can do them proud,” he signed off.