AB de Villiers is considered one of the most feared batsmen in contemporary cricket. On Sunday night, he showed exactly why as he smashed a 41-ball 89 not out as Royal Challengers Bangalore stunned Sunrisers Hyderabad by 4 wickets. (Match report | Scorecard | Highlights)
De Villiers blasted six fours and as many as eight sixes in an innings which lit up Bangalore's skyline. Fans went into frenzied celebrations but for De Villiers, as he chose to put it, 'it was a lucky day.'
"I spoke to my parents today and my dad said others are lucky. Guess I had my luck today," he said at the post-match presentation. However it seemed skill, and not luck, fuelled De Villiers.
Coming in to bat at No. 5, De Villiers began slowly as he looked to rebuild a wobbly Bangalore chase. The veteran South African however switched gears with effortless ease, especially when he lost Yuvraj Singh's company with the team score on 95/5 in the 15th over. What followed was sheer carnage but a modest De Villiers credited the entire team for the eventual triumph.
"In those kinds of situations, it is the small things that matter the most. It is team spirit, such things that matter in the end," he said.
"Yuvraj kept boosting me up tonight, got to give credit to him."
While Yuvraj may have played a 'crucial' role, it was De Villiers and his bat that left the Hyderabad bowlers, including compatriot Dale Steyn, staring in utter disbelief.
"He (Steyn) won the first set and I won the second. I would have loved to have a third set against him," said De Villiers. Steyn remained wicket-less and had an abysmal economy of 9.75 from his four overs.
While Bangalore are placed fourth in the points table and would be hoping for an encore from De Villiers, Hyderabad drop down to sixth spot.