In the present lockdown period, the former South African captain AB de Villiers was recently involved in the Instagram live session with the former Zimbabwe cricketer Mpumelelo ‘Pommy’ Mbangwa. During that chat, De Villiers faced some tough bouncers on choosing the favourite among Virat Kohli, Steven Smith and Sachin Tendulkar, which he handled very well.
At first, a fan asked AB de Villiers to choose between the Indian captain Virat Kohli and the Australian star Steven Smith. Kohli and De Villiers are the teammates in the IPL team Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB), and they are very strong friends. While the former Proteas captain felt it was the very difficult choice, he claimed that Kohli is more natural ball striker.
De Villiers claimed, “It’s difficult (to pick between Virat Kohli and Steve Smith). Virat is definitely the more natural ball striker. Smudge (Smith) is also up to that.”
Then, De Villiers used tennis terms to describe them. According to him, Kohli is like Roger Federer and Smith is like Rafael Nadal. De Villiers claimed that Kohli is the natural ball-player while Smith is mentally very strong, which helps him to score runs despite having an odd stance.
The former Proteas captain added, “Let’s do it in tennis terms. Virat is like Federer, Smith is more like Nadal. He’s (Smith) mentally very strong and figured out a way of scoring runs, he looks odd at the crease, doesn’t look natural but he ends up breaking records and doing amazing things at the crease. But my pick is Virat, who is more of a natural ball-player. He’s scored runs all over the world, won games under pressure so he’s my pick.”
Sachin Tendulkar for both of us is like a role model: AB de Villiers
Then, another fan asked AB de Villiers about his favourite choice between the legendary Indian cricketer Sachin Tendulkar and Kohli. He said that Tendulkar was the role model of him and Kohli.
De Villiers said, “Sachin for both (him and Kohli) of us is like a role model. The way he stood out back in the day in his era and the things he achieved and with the grace he did all of that, its a great example for everyone.
“I think Virat will also say that he’s (Tendulkar) the main guy, he’s the dude. He set the standards for guys like us to follow. Personally for me, specially in a chase I’d say Virat is the best I’ve ever seen in my life. There’s no-one that beats him when it comes to… the opposition scores 330 and you’ve got to go chase it down.”
Virat Kohli tops Sachin Tendulkar there when it comes to chasing under pressure: AB de Villiers
While De Villiers praised Tendulkar for his impressive batting in all formats in every situation, he gave the higher rate to Kohli for chasing under pressure.
The former Proteas captain added, “Sachin was amazing in all formats, all sorts of situations but Virat tops him there when it comes to chasing under pressure. For me that’s where I rate sportsman, when it comes to tennis, golf… the Tiger Woods of the world. When the heat is really on you feel like your whole body is numb, but he (Kohli) stands up and he does amazing things. That’s what Virat does under pressure.”