Harshal Patel Pays Tribute To Retired AB de Villiers
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Harshal Patel Pays Tribute To Retired AB de Villiers

AB de Villiers [Image-IPLT20]
AB de Villiers [Image-IPLT20]

Harshal Patel paid tribute to his former Royal Challengers Bangalore and South Africa batting great AB de Villiers after the latter announced his retirement from all forms of the game on Friday.

India fast bowler Harshal Patel said that AB de Villiers, with whom he shared a dressing room this season at Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) in the Indian Premier League, told him how to reduce the number of big overs he tends to have. AB De Villiers retires as the sixth highest run-getter in the tournament and one of the two overseas players to scale the mountain of 5000 runs.

Harshal Patel
Harshal Patel (Image Credit: Twitter)

Harshal Patel Reckons Retired RCB’s AB De Villiers Had A Massive Impact As He Advised The Pacer How To Reduce Big Overs

AB De Villiers retired from all forms of cricket on Saturday, making the 2021 season of the IPL his last IPL, in which Harshal Patel equalled the record for most wickets in a single season.

“AB has had a massive impact in my career. I have always been a silent observer of him,” Harshal Patel said in a press conference after Saturday’s match.

“Just before the UAE leg (of the IPL) I had asked him how I can reduce my big overs. I have conceded even 30 runs in an over in the IPL and I wanted to avoid that. He told me to not change my tactics when the batsman hits me on my good deliveries,” said Harshal Patel.

AB de Villiers
AB de Villiers (Image Credit: Twitter)

“You have to force the batsman to hit your good deliveries instead of changing it as soon as you get hit because that is something that the batsman expects. That is something that stayed with me throughout the UAE leg of IPL and it will stay with me throughout my career, ” said Harshal Patel.

The 37-year-old had played in 184 IPL matches, firstly for Delhi Capitals (formerly Delhi Daredevils) for three seasons, followed by a successful decade with Bangalore, where he formed a formidable partnership with Virat Kohli. Overall, he scored 5162 runs at an average of 39.70 and strike rate of 151.68, including three centuries and 40 half-centuries while being a member of the RCB side, which entered the IPL playoffs five times.

Harshal Patel won the player of the match for his figures of 2/25 in the 2nd T20I vs Kiwis. Harshal Patel has just come off a season where he topped the wicket charts(winning Purple Cap for most-32 scalps) in IPL 2021 and won the Most Valuable Player award, then rocked up to his first international outing by becoming the eighth player to win the Player of the Match award on his T20I debut for India.

AB De Villiers Congratulated By Former RCB Skipper Virat Kohli

Earlier, AB De Villiers’s longtime RCB teammate and former captain Virat Kohli also paid tribute to AB De Villiers.

“To the best player of our times and the most inspirational person I’ve met, you can be very proud of what you’ve done and what you’ve given to RCB my brother. Our bond is beyond the game and will always be. This hurts my heart but I know you’ve made the best decision for yourself and your family as you’ve always done. I love you@ABdeVilliers17,” said Kohli.

AB de Villiers, who hangs up his boot as one of the greatest players in the shortest format of the game, hit 9424 runs in 340 matches in T20 cricket, having played franchise-based cricket across the globe. He had retired from international cricket in 2018 after scoring 1672 runs in 78 T20Is, 9577 runs in 228 ODI matches, and 8765 runs in 114 Tests.

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