South Africa captain Faf du Plessis has said that AB de Villiers will be welcomed back into the national team ahead of the T20 World Cup. De Villiers had retired from international cricket in 2018 but has been playing domestic T20 Leagues all around the world.

AB de Villiers has been in constant touch with South Africa head coach Mark Boucher, CSA director of cricket Graeme Smith and captain Faf du Plessis about his possible return to the national team for the showpiece event.

“We spoke about it, and I was very keen to have him back. That was even before the new coaching staff was on board,” du Plessis said.

“Then it was the process of what does the next year look like in terms of T20 cricket-how many games; where, when, what? And then trying to unfold that in a way that we can get him back. He’s keen to come to do that I don’t know when. I can’t give you that answer yet because that decision hasn’t been taken. But there would be a series we would like to get him back to play.”

“In an ideal world we would like to try and make sure that we can play our best 11, 12, 13 players for a few games or series together leading up to the T20 World Cup,” Du Plessis said, and explained his thinking.

“A learning curve for me with the 50-over World Cup last year was that we never had the combinations we were looking for. As a new coach Ottis Gibson didn’t know a lot of the players. There was a search for a lot of players and finding combinations. If I could do that over again, I would try and settle into the combinations a little earlier so the guys can play as many games as possible together.”

AB de Villiers is currently playing for the Brisbane Heat in the Big Bash League, which ends four days before South Africa’s T20 series against England. De Villiers will also play at the IPL, which does not clash with any South African fixtures.

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