De Villiers happy to play part in Pakistan cricket revival

Former South Africa captain is excited about playing in Lahore during PSL4

De Villiers happy to play part in Pakistan cricket revival PHOTO COURTESY: Twitter/PSL

Former South Africa captain AB de Villiers is excited about playing a role in the revival of cricket in Pakistan.

De Villiers will be coming to Lahore, while representing Lahore Qalandars, during the fourth edition of ongoing Habib Bank Limited (HBL) Pakistan Super League (PSL).

While talking in an interview with the official HBL PSL website, De Villiers expected people in Lahore to turn up in numbers for the upcoming matches.

“I just hope we play some good cricket over there and win some games. Ultimately, the fans want us to play good cricket and win games,” said De Villiers. “Hopefully, we get to entertain them as well. So, my message to them would be to come out in big numbers and support us and we will hopefully return that by winning some games.”

He added: I feel Pakistan deserved to have cricket in their home country. I really feel they do. If I could contribute, in any way, in helping that happen, even if it is 0.01 per cent then I am very happy to do so.”

De Villiers also rates the league as one of the best in the business and only behind Indian Premier League, in terms of quality of cricket.

“It is right up there with some of the best cricket that I have played. May be, it’s just below the IPL when it comes to quality of cricket. It’s second to none, may be third to none,” he said. “I think it is a very well organized tournament as well and really have competitive matches of cricket, which is great.”

The 35-year-old also spoke about the quality of bowling in the league, while responding to a question about whether the bowling in HBL PSL is the most challenging among all the leagues.

“There is some good bowling but it depends on where you play. The wickets in Sharjah were quite flat and more batsmen-friendly. In Dubai, I always feel that the bowlers are in the game as there is little bit of movement with the newish ball,” he said. “But, yeah, I think the bowling attacks are really competitive. Then some international bowlers are around as well that top-up the bowling even more.”

De Villiers also named his favourites for the upcoming 2019 World Cup in England and Wales.

“It’s difficult to say who will win. You can’t look past India and Pakistan in the ODIs. Pakistan won the Champions Trophy, England are the hosts and you cannot discount Australia. South Africa would like to think they can win, so these are the five I have named who are the real big favourites,” he said. “The West Indies are playing good cricket, so it’s difficult to single out a team or two. On my experience and having done it before, I think India and Pakistan have probably the best chance.”