Former South African captain AB de Villiers recently talked about how he was inspired with the former South African cricket star Jonty Rhodes’ famous run-out Pakistan cricketer Inzamam-ul-Haq in the 1992 Cricket World Cup.
It was undoubtedly one of the greatest run-outs in international cricket history. It was the league stage match in the 1992 Cricket World Cup between South Africa and Pakistan at Brisbane where the Pakistan cricketer Inzamam-ul-Haq, who later evolved as a legend, was run out due to the marvellous effort from the 22-year-old Proteas cricketer Jonty Rhodes.
The point fielder Rhodes quickly understood the situation when Inzamam and captain Imran Khan had a misunderstanding in the running between the wicket. As speedy Rhodes was aggressively running towards the striker end wickets after picking up the ball, under pressure Inzamam decided to return to his crease but Rhodes was too quick. The set batsman Inzamam (48) failed to save his wicket as Rhodes successfully drove to the stumps and crushed the wickets to run out Inzamam. It was the game-changing moment as South Africa finally won that match by 20 runs (revised target).
— ICC (@ICC) March 8, 2019
Talking about that incredible dismissal, AB de Villiers told BBC London’s Kevin Hand for Middlesex Cricket, “Jonty Rhodes was the standout. Once again, from a young age, he had the biggest impact. When I was 8 years old, I saw the run out live in the World Cup 1992. That had a huge impact on me.”
I practiced that run out every day of my life: AB de Villiers
Since then, AB de Villiers practised hugely that incredible run out and tried to imitate Rhodes as he faced some pains too. Though he never got an opportunity to imitate that in his career, it is still his inspiring moment as it helps him to take the catches on the field.
De Villiers added, “I practiced that run out every day of my life. I had grass all over, blood but I had to practice that run out. I never had the opportunity to do that run out in my career. But it still inspired me so much to do special things on the field, to take catches for the team. That’s the way Jonty played. That’s the way I always wanted.”
AB de Villiers served for South Africa between 2004 and 2018 where he played 114 Tests, 228 ODIs and 78 T20Is. He was one of the greatest cricketers in South African cricket history. De Villiers retired from the international cricket in May 2018. While he still participates in the various global T20 leagues and maintains his familiar performances, he has also wished to return to the national team.