He came, he saw and he conquered. Few expected AB de Villiers to come and make an impact like he did in his first game of IPL season 10, even he was surprised himself. But then again there is a reason he is called the 'Superman' of cricket. As the saying goes, behind every successful man there is a woman and De Villiers' case seems to be no different. After making Kings XI Punjab bowlers' lives a living hell, the South African credited his wife Danielle for helping him overcome self-doubt and for being his inspiration.
De Villiers had missed Royal Challengers Bangalore's first two games owing to a back injury and there was still doubt over his inclusion in the side ahead of the match against Kings XI Punjab on Monday night.
During Punjab's chase, the South African, who was miked up, was asked by Sanjay Manjrekar how he overcame rustiness and was able to get going from his very first game.
"I did surprise myself. It is a more mental thing than anything else, it's not like you become a bad player overnight, the rustiness you refer to is more self-doubt, which was there over the last few days.
"I phoned my wife just before the game telling her that I am doubting myself a bit but I surprised myself and played a few good shots," said De Villiers.
"She was actually lying next to my boy, sleeping, when I asked for her advice and she had to call back a few minutes later. She told me that she backs me and to stay calm and that she was on her way, arriving tomorrow, so I think that was the inspiration."
De Villiers smashed an unbeaten 89 off just 46 balls to help RCB post a respectable total of 148 for four. The South African came to bat in the start of the second over after captain Shane Watson was sent packing by Axar Patel on the last ball of the first over.
De Villiers first shot was a defensive push that beat the point fielder as well as third man to give him his first boundary. He then had to curb his attacking instincts as wickets tumbled around him.
RCB were 72 for four in 15.2 overs and not going anywhere really while De Villiers was batting on 31 off 28 balls. That's when the South African decided he had enough of pushing it around and flexed his muscles. The result was a sixes storm that hit Indore!
In his next 18 balls, De Villiers smashed 58 runs with two deliveries being sent out of the ground. The fearsome attack left everyone, including Punjab captain Glenn Maxwell stunned and sent Twitter into frenzy.
Mr 360 is back ! Genius @ABdeVilliers17— yuvraj singh (@YUVSTRONG12) April 10, 2017
AB— Carlos Brathwaite (@TridentSportsX) April 10, 2017
RCB Score summary:— Broken Cricket (@BrokenCricket) April 10, 2017
AB De Villiers: 89 rune in 46 Balls
The Rest: 59 Runs in 74 Balls
Sums Up the innings ??
With AB going all guns blazing, RCB fans will now be hoping that their other talisman and leader Virat Kohli returns soon and makes an instant impact like the South African.