Batting maestro Virat Kohli heaped huge praise on Royal Challengers Bangalore Hall of Famers – AB de Villiers and Chris Gayle. The Bangalore based franchise on Tuesday announced its first two inductees to the Hall of Fame. It was the first time when an IPL franchise introduced such a prestigious category to honour their former players. RCB organized the event in the IPL bio-secure bubble as De Villiers and Gayle joined it via video conference.
During the event, former RCB captain Virat Kohli hailed the former duo’s time at the franchise and how they changed the Indian Premier League with their destructive batting.
“AB has truly changed the game of cricket with his innovation and sportsmanship which defines RCB’s ‘Play Bold’ philosophy. In the videos, we saw you guys have changed how IPL is played. With AB I played for 11 years with Chris I played for seven. And both the journeys started in 2011 which for me is going to be the most special year as I met the both of you,” Kohli said.
Introducing the #RCB Hall of Fame: Match winners, Legends, Superstars, Heroes – you can go on and on about @ABdeVilliers17 and @henrygayle, two individuals who are responsible for taking IPL to where it is today. #PlayBold #WeAreChallengers #IPL2022 #ನಮ್ಮRCB #RCBHallOfFame pic.twitter.com/r7VUkxqEzP
— Royal Challengers Bangalore (@RCBTweets) May 17, 2022
South African great de Villiers had been an integral part of RCB from 2011 to 2021, dashing left-handed batter Gayle from West Indies was with the franchise for six years.
The 34-year-old recalled De Villiers’ contributions to RCB as he particularly talked about the two iconic matches of the 2016 season.
I always have a few memories with you guys that stand. With AB, it was the two games against Gujarat in 2016. That partnership I had will last with me for life. I got to see close-up how it is done and that left me astonished. In the same year when we were struggling, it was AB and Iqbal who took us home,” Kohli said.
Talking about the Universe Boss, Kohli said no one can forget his 175-run knock which is still the highest score in IPL history.
“With Chris that year, he came in late after four games. Till then he must have been chilling in Jamaica. But then, he hit two centuries that year and went on to score a lot of runs. And then the 175, who can forget that,” Kohli added.