AB de Villiers‘ presence wouldn’t have counted much for the Proteas and his decision to stay retired from international cricket isn’t something to be pondered upon, felt former India cricketer-turned commentator Aakash Chopra. When asked about South Africa’s chances in the upcoming T20 World Cup, he mentioned that although it is difficult to replace ABD but his presence wasn’t enough in 2015 World Cup where South Africa were eliminated in the semi-final. De Villiers called it quits from international cricket in 2017 but there were talks that he might don the Protea jersey later this year when T20 World Cup takes place in India. But it wasn’t to be.
“The chances of their progressing would have been better if AB de Villiers was there but if he is not there, it is impossible to get a player of his quality. The team still has good players but is it a team that can win the World Cup, I personally don’t think so," Chopra said in a response to a question asked by a fan on his Youtube video.
“This team can do well, trouble a few people and spoil other teams’ parties but they might not be able to win the World Cup because wherever it happens, whether in India or the UAE, I have my reservations with regards to their chances to win the tournament in these conditions."
“The first thing is whether they can win the World Cup is a big question. They did not win when AB de Villiers was there as well. They play well but something happens when they come for an ICC trophy. At this point in time, the team is not that good. Let’s be fair, don’t count them out. They are a good team, they fight but they are also a team that struggles at the end and chokes at times. They don’t really know how to close the big moments. That problem has been there with this team," he added.