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August 2019

Cricket Profile

  •  Major teams: South Africa (national), Northern Titans (domestic) & Bangalore Royal Challangers (Indian Premier League)
  • Leadership roles: National One-Day & Twenty20 Captain
  • Batting: Right-hand bat
  • Bowling style: Right-arm medium
  • Fielding position: Wicketkeeper / cover and backward point
  • Test Cap No: 296 / ODI Cap No: 78 / T20 Cap No: 20
  • Test Shirt No: 61 / ODI Shirt No: 17

AB  is a right-handed batsman, who, in a very short space of time, has accumulated many runs in Tests including centuries against England, India, the West Indies and Australia. He has been dismissed in the 90s on five occasions in Tests. He still holds the record for most Test innings without registering a duck (78), before being dismissed for nought against Bangladesh in November 2008. He is also a wicketkeeper sometimes.

AB played for Carrickfergus Cricket Club in Northern Ireland as youngster, became the second youngest and second fastest South African to reach 1000 test runs after Graeme Pollock and in his test career so far AB has batted, bowled and kept wicket as well. He is a naturally born sportsman and has excelled in golf (playing off scratch despite playing infrequently), rugby, cricket and tennis. However, he chose to pursue a career in cricket and, after a spell in the South Africa U19 team, he made his debut for the Titans in 2003/4.

He made his test debut as a 20 year old on 16 December 2004 against England at Port Elizabeth. He made an impression opening the batting, but was dropped down the order for the second test and also handed the wicket-keeping gloves. In this match, he made a match saving half century from number seven. However, he found himself at the top of the order again for the final test of the series and has played the majority of his tests there. Since then he has not missed a Test match and has also batted down the order in some tests leading to speculation that he may possibly take the place of Mark Boucher as the wicket-keeper/batsman when Boucher retires, although AB has himself expressed a preference for playing as a specialist batsman only.

He has been used in a similar fashion to Jonty Rhodes in ODIs, opening the innings, although he currently bats in the middle order. The 2005 ODI tour to India represented a ‘coming of age’ for AB as a cricketer as he scored his second ODI half century on 24 October, 2006, batting 5th in a partnership with Mark Boucher, playing against an impressive Sri Lankan side. De Villiers gave the selectors a sign by producing his then highest one-day score of 92 not out, which included 12 fours and one six, from 98 balls against India in the 2006 winter series.

For the 2009/10 ODI series against England, AB was promoted up the order to the pivotal No. 3 position replacing long-time main stay, Jacques Kallis. Of this, AB said, “I’m looking forward to the challenge of playing up the order and I’m looking forward to scoring a few big scores”.

Surprisingly, AB’s batting averages are higher against more prominent opposition, rather than weaker opponents (such as non-Test playing sides). This is because, as AB stated in an interview, he finds it tough when “the pressure is a bit down [sic]” and loves the “tense moments and pressure situations” when the team is counting on him to perform.

AB has a reputation as an outstanding fielder, typified by a sensational diving run-out of Simon Katich of Australia in 2005. This has also led people to make further comparisons of him to Jonty Rhodes as he was also one of the finest fielders of his generation.

Profile from CricInfo (by Telford Vice)

A batsman of breathtaking chutzpah and enterprise, as well as the skills and the temperament required to back up his creative intent. A fielder able to leap tall buildings and still come up with the catch. A wicketkeeper who is perfectly at ease donning pads and gloves. A fine rugby player, golfer, and tennis player. All AB de Villiers needs to show off his abundant gifts is a ball. Just about any ball.

Cricket should be pleased to have him. Few drive the ball as sweetly and to the boundary as regularly, and – in South Africa, at any rate – even fewer possess the silkily snappy footwork required to put spinners in their place. de Villiers is also among the fastest and the most instinctively sensible runners between the wickets. Marry all that with an approach to life that veers between laconic and laid back, and it isn’t difficult to fathom why he has been afforded senior player status in the South African team years ahead of his time.

de Villiers’ potential was recognised years before he made the leap to senior international level as an opening batsman against England at Port Elizabeth in 2004-05. He has batted everywhere from number one to number eight – with the important exception of number three – and has performed well in most of these positions.

After a brief slump in form in 2006 and 2007, de Villiers returned to the straight and narrow early in 2008 with a blistering 103 not out off 109 balls in Durban against West Indies. Later that year came one of de Villiers’ career highlights, an undefeated 217 at Ahmedabad. It was the first double-century by a South African against India.

South Africans do not take easily to the precociously talented, but it helps if they do not come across all precocious. Such is the case with de Villiers, whose lazy smile under an every-which-way thatch of blond hair has helped convince the nation that he’s worth feeding despite all that talent. The nation is not wrong.

de Villiers adjusts to the requirements of cricket’s various formats as effortlessly as someone of his ample abilities should do. So much so that he has yet to fall victim to the curse of selection disputes, a curse that has struck even as accomplished a player as Jacques Kallis. Instead, as a career that should be in its adolescence by the mere measure of time and matches arches ever upward, the only question to be asked about de Villiers is how to deploy him to maximum effect.

Milestones & Achievements

  • In 2009 he was nominated for ICC Cricketer of the year and ICC Test Player of the year. He also was named South Africa’s One-Day Cricketer of the Year and SuperSport Fans’ Player of the Year.
  • In 2010, AB took over as wicketkeeper for South Africa in the one-day version of the game. He was also named as the ICC One-Day Cricketer of the Year.
  • On November 21, 2010 in the 2nd Test against Pakistan, AB re-wrote the record books by scoring 278 not out – the highest individual score for a South African batsman in Tests. This stellar innings along with other consistent performances helped him enter the ICC Top 10 Test Batsman rankings for the first time at No. 5.
  • On December 18, 2010 in the 1st Test against India, AB scored the fastest Test century by a South African batsman. He scored his century in one session off just 75 balls – an innings that included five sixes and 11 fours.
  • On February 24, 2011 during RSA’s opening Cricket World Cup match against the West Indies, AB scored the fastest WC century by a South African reaching the milestone in 97 balls.
  • On March 4, 2011 during the Cricket World Cup, AB became the first South African to score two centuries in a single World Cup. They were successive centuries against West Indies and the Netherlands. On both occasions, AB was named Man of the Match.
  • On June 6, 2011 during the announcement of SA’s new leadership team, AB was appointed captain of the One-Day and Twenty20 teams. Hashim Amla was appointed his deputy; and Gary Kirsten, the new coach.
  • On June 7, 2011 at the annual Cricket South Africa (CSA) Awards, AB was named One-Day Cricketer of the Year.

 

Behind The Name

We all know that AB de Villiers stands for Abraham Benjamin de Villiers. But what does AB’s name actually mean? Where did it originate from? Keep reading to find out!

  • The boy’s name Abraham is typically pronounced “AY-bra-ham”, but in AB’s case it is pronounced “AH-brahm”. It is of Hebrew origin, and its meaning is “father of a multitude (of nations)”.
  • The boy’s name Benjamin is pronounced BEN-ja-men. It is of Hebrew origin, and its meaning is “son of the right hand; or son of the south”.
  • The surname of de Villiers was a locational name ‘of Villiers’ a spot in France. The name was brought to England in the wake of the Norman Conquest of 1066. Local names usually denoted where a man held his land, and indicated where he actually lived. Almost every city, town or village existing in the Middle Ages has served to name one or more families. Where a man lived was his means of identification. When a man left his birthplace or village where he had been known, and went elsewhere, people would likely refer to him by the name of his former residence or birthplace, or by the name of the land which he owned.

Endorsements

 

KookaburraKOOKABURRA
AB has been associated with Kookaburra since the beginning of his international cricket career. He currently uses cricket bats and gear from the Kahuna range. “I have been using Kookaburra bats and equipment ever since I can remember; the quality is fantastic.”

 

SuperSportSUPERSPORT
The team at SuperSport look after AB’s presence online at his official site. AB also blogs for SuperSport’s Cricket division when he is playing.

PumaPUMA
AB’s first choice in cricket footwear is Puma. He also wears the Puma brand recreationally when out and about.

 

MEDIA

Just Fun PromotionsJUST FUN PROMOTIONS
Just Fun Promotions executes and co-ordinates promotional toy campaigns in South Africa to the highest of standards. AB is involved in the promotion of the “Off the Wall Ball”. You can see a clip of AB recording the commercial here.

 

Jacaranda94.2 JACARANDA
AB has regular interview slots and podcasts with this Johannesburg-based radio station. He is featured in their “Sports Cage” segments.

 

LIFESTYLE

AudiAUDI
AB is a brand ambassador for Audi. The partnership began in 2008 with AB taking an Audi S3, and has now continued with AB taking delivery of an Audi TT in April 2009. “The TT is a very special car! There’s nothing better than spending time in this wonderful vehicle. It’s really extremely solid on the road. I’ve gotta mention that it’s the most attractive car I’ve been in. I’m still pretty young and I enjoy the fresh, attractive vibe of this car,” says AB.

Hirsch'sHIRSCH’S
Still locating information…

The HillsTHE HILLS
The Hills is a private Golf and Eco Estate located in the Eastern part of Pretoria. Says AB as an official ambassador, “South Africa has many beautiful golf course estates, and I reckon The Hills
ranks among the finest. I’m excited to become a resident at The Hills, can’t wait.”

Aca JoeACA JOE
AB is a fan of the Aca Joe brand for casual wear. “I love these clothes; they’re proudly South African and soon they’ll be taking on the world.”

 

CHARITY

MADMAKE-A-DIFFERENCE
AB is passionate about his involvement in Francois Pienaar’s Make a Difference Foundation. This organization gives underprivileged children the opportunity to attend the country’s best schools, so he mentors one particular youngster at school in Johannesburg and he donates 100% of his fee for giving weekly radio interviews to M.A.D.

The Music

THE BEGINNING

ab_biography05AB and his friend, Ampie du Preez released the motivational song “Show Them Who You Are” at the end of 2008. This song became the anthem of the Proteas’ rise to victory against Australia, and is AB’s chosen song for the 2009/10 season when he walks out to bat for his country.

You can purchase the song at their online store at Arkade.

In addition to providing the amazing vocals, both AB and Ampie have written the songs for their upcoming album and play the guitar. They spent some time on AB’s parents’ farm near Bela-Bela writing songs for the album. AB started writing songs in matric and one of these songs, about his school love, may be featured on the CD. “No, she didn’t break my heart, I did the heartbreaking – something that I’m not proud of,” he says.

AB learnt to play the guitar in Grade 5 and takes it with him whenever he’s on tour with the Proteas. He also takes his songwriting and singing seriously saying, “It has always been my dream to make and record music. And we’re not merely dabbling in it – we’ve decided that our CD can’t be anything but great.”

THE DEBUT ALBUM – “MAAK JOU DROME WAAR”

AB and Ampie - Maak Jou Drome Waar Album CoverAB and Ampie are signed to the Sony BMG label and their debut album, “Maak Jou Drome Waar” (Afrikaans for “Make Your Dreams Come True”) will be released on August 2, 2010. Release dates for other countries have yet to be confirmed, but the album is available for download from various online stores. The album consists mainly of power ballads with a “follow-your-dreams” theme; and love songs. There are 14 songs – 9 in Afrikaans and 5 in English.

The album was recorded over a few months (to accomodate AB’s hectic cricket playing schedule) earlier in the year and was produced by their friend and well-known producer, Murray Lubbe, who Ampie describes as a “genius”. You can see the guys working on their music at AB’s Official Site as AB gives you a behind-the-scenes look at the recording process.

Their first music video from the album, which is also the title track, Maak Jou Drome Waar was released in April 2010 online on YouTube. AB has confirmed that the second single to be released on the album will be in English (following the debut single and title track, Maak Jou Drome Waar, in Afrikaans).

AB and Ampie are planning to do a few concerts during cricket’s slow season from July to October. AB’s favourite song on the album is one that he and Ampie wrote in honour of the inspirational Nelson Mandela, called “Madibaland”.

Track listing for Maak Jou Drome Waar

  1. Maak Jou Drome Waar (1st single and video)
  2. Lift
  3. Forgiveness feat. Snotkop (2nd single)
  4. Madibaland
  5. Deel Van My (3rd single)
  6. Misunderstood (1st English single)
  7. Hoor Jy My
  8. Stronger
  9. Sprokie Vir Jou
  10. Valentyn
  11. Onthou Jy
  12. Show Them Who You Are
  13. Asem In
  14. Madibaland (Acoustic)

Info from sticksports.com

It’s no secret that sports and music are a perfect match. You only need be at a big sporting event to know how important a stadium-sized tune is to getting hearts racing and setting the scene for the action unfolding on the field.

But it’s not often that the person creating that power-packed sports action is the same person behind the mic – until now. The release of debut album ‘Maak Jou Drome Waar’ by AB de Villiers and Ampie du Preez is a first for a top-drawer South African cricketer – and will come as a brilliant treat to those who have tracked the career of the prodigiously talented top-order batsman.

Of course, De Villiers is quick to pay tribute to his “team-mate” in creating “Maak Jou Drome Waar”.

“Ampie’s an amazing partner to work with and a brilliant musician,” the cricketer-turned-musician says of his longtime friend and creative comrade-in-arms on the 14-track offering.

Ampie du Preez – who has gained a reputation as a formidable musician through his work with bands like ‘n Man Soos Jan – is as full of praise for his partner on “Maak Jou Drome Waar”.

“AB is as fearless with his music as he is on the cricket pitch,” Du Preez reveals.

Both De Villiers and Du Preez are proud South Africans – and alongside the songs of young crushes (the nostalgic “Onthou Jy”) and early love (“Valentyn”) comes “Madibaland”, a moving, thoughtful and delicately-rendered tribute to former President Nelson Mandela. The song appears twice on “Maak Jou Drome Waar” – an original and an acoustic version. It’s an indication of how important Madiba is to two young Afrikaners who are fully engaged with the heart of the democratic South Africa – and, in De Villier’s case, stands as a role-model to young South Africans of all backgrounds.

“We hoped to make an album that was first and foremost great entertainment for music fans,” says Du Preez. “But,” adds De Villiers, “we also wanted the album to uplift, inspire and unite everyone in the spirit of Madiba.”

Indeed. With “Maak Jou Drome Waar”, these creative talents have done just that – proving once and for all that sports and music can combine in the most potent way.

BUY AND DOWNLOAD “MAAK JOU DROME WAAR”

Maak Jou Drome Waar on CD is available only in South Africa. For fans who are not in South Africa, you can still access AB and Ampie’s new album online!

  • Europe/U.K.: 7digital.com and Amazon.co.uk
  • Worldwide: mflow
  • Australia: Nokia Music Store (you will need to download the Nokia Ovi Player before searching the store)

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Quick Facts

Quick Facts

THE BASICS

  • Full Name: Abraham Benjamin de Villiers (prefers to be called AB)
  • Nickname: Abbas
  • Date of Birth: 17 February, 1984
  • Star Sign: Aquarius
  • Place of Birth: Warmbaths/Warmbad (now renamed Bela Bela), Transvaal Province
  • Currently Resides: Pretoria, Gauteng Province
  • Height: 178cm (5’10”)
  • Family: Parents – Millie & Abraham Benjamin; and brothers – Jan & Wessels (9 years & 6 years older respectively)
  • Marital status: Married to Danielle Swart (March 30, 2013)
  • Children: a son, AB (born July 23, 2015)
  • Schools Attended: AB went to primary school in Warmbaths, and then became a boarder at Afrikaans Hoër Seunskool.
  • Occupation: South African cricketer and part-time musician (AB writes songs, plays the guitar and released an album with Ampie du Preez called, “Maak Jou Drome Waar” in August 2010.)

AB’s FAVOURITES

  • Cricket Ground: SuperSport Park, Centurion (his home ground)
  • Form of Cricket: Test Matches
  • Food Indulgences: Pasta and seafood
  • Drink: Passionfruit and soda
  • Restaurant: Crawdaddy’s, Menlyn Park
  • Sportsmen: Tiger Woods & Roger Federer
  • Rugby Teams: Blue Bulls & Springboks
  • Soccer Team:  Manchester United
  • School Subject: Biology
  • Movies: “Gladiator” & “A River Runs Through It”
  • Song: “Needs” by Collective Soul, & “All That I Have” by Snow Patrol
  • Band: Snow Patrol
  • Book: The Bible
  • Actress: Kate Beckinsale
  • Number: 17

MISCELLANEOUS

  • Alternative career: “I would probably be a doctor like my dad, but I’ve never had the chance to study”.
  • First job: carrying the drinks in the backyard while his brothers played cricket. AB was 4 years old and his reward at the end of the day was the chance to bat.
  • Who he’d invite to dinner: Nelson Mandela, Tiger Woods, Roger Federer & Kate Beckinsale. AB has also mentioned he’d invite Brad Pitt (and maybe Angelina, too).
  • Scared of: snakes

AB de Villiers relishes captaincy challenge

At the start of his cricket career, captaincy may have “definitely not been” one of AB de Villiers’ goals, but now that he has been appointed South Africa’s limited-overs captain, de Villiers is “prepared to give up everything to make it work”.

de Villiers takes over from Graeme Smith, who stepped down as the ODI and Twenty20 captain after the World Cup, and will be Smith’s deputy in Tests. In an interview with Reuters, de Villiers confessed that while he didn’t enjoy his previous stint as captain when he was at school, those misgivings were now behind him. “I captained my team at school (Afrikaans High School, Pretoria) for a few games but I didn’t enjoy it so much,” De Villiers said. “I was more focussed on my batting then and playing other sports like rugby.”

So what was it that brought about a change of heart? “Captaining South Africa was definitely not one of my goals,” de Villiers said, “but I started believing I could do it when Graeme Smith said I had a lot of leadership qualities. He said I should take more responsibility, act more like a leader and talk more in team meetings.”

“Henning Gericke [mental conditioning coach] and Corrie van Zyl [South Africa coach until the World Cup] said I could be a captain if I wanted to be one. That’s when I started to believe.”

de Villiers rated his predecessor Smith as the best captain he has played under and said he was very keen to make his captaincy stint work. “I truly believe I have qualities as a captain and I have to make up my own mind – captain the team my way, not how Hansie [Cronje] or Graeme did it. As a captain, I can’t make the same mistake twice. As a player, you can get away with that, but if the captain does that then it affects the whole team.”

He also said he respected the “passion, pride and fighting spirit”, that Gary Kirsten, South Africa’s newly-appointed national coach, showed during his playing days. “He’s shown the same qualities as a coach, especially at the World Cup, and I hope I’ll be able to help bring those into our side too. I’d like to be the same sort of captain, showing resilience.

“I think we’ll complement each other a lot, Gary’s just a wonderful coach and a top-class human being.”

Having played 66 Tests, 119 ODIs and 33 Twenty20 games for South Africa, de Villiers is not only one of the senior batsmen in the side, he is also keeps wickets in the limited-overs format. He acknowledged that with captaincy, the additional responsibility of keeping wickets will have to be re-examined. “We’re definitely going to have to discuss the wicketkeeping, although it doesn’t have to happen right now. But it is important to decide if there is too much on my shoulders.”

de Villiers said one of his key objectives as captain would be to address South Africa’s history of failing to succeed in multi-team tournaments. “Obviously, we have a history of not performing well in big events. We didn’t play badly overall, but went down when the pressure was on us again.

“But there’s a fresh look in the side now, which is good, and then it’s up to the leaders to work together with trust. But it’s an unbelievable responsibility.”

Biography

EARLY LIFE

Baby AB with his father.Abraham Benjamin de Villiers (more commonly known by his initials, AB) was born on February 17, 1984 in Pretoria, Transvaal Province, South Africa. He is the youngest of three sons born to parents Millie and Abraham Benjamin (who AB is named after) – his older siblings being Jan (9 years older) and Wessels (6 years older). His mother works in property, while his father is a doctor with a general practice. AB was raised in the small town of Warmbad, in the north of the country, where he attended primary school. It was here that AB learned to play cricket in the backyard with his brothers.

“When I was very young, I started playing cricket in the garden against my older brothers, Jan and Wessels, and Martin van Jaarsveld [who later played for the Titans and South Africa],” AB remembers. “I had to carry the water and, after a long day, they would finally give me my chance. I was a little ou and they were all in matric. They would try to intimidate me. The bat was actually too heavy for me, and I would rest it on the dustbin while they were walking back to their mark,” he says. “They battled to get me out and they would get so frustrated that they’d bowl a couple of beamers at me to see what I would do. Saturday games at our house in Bela Bela were very competitive. My brothers were merciless. They were monsters. There were always a lot of tears—usually mine,” he laughs.

AB playing cricket as a child.“I decided when I was 10 that I was going to do something in sport one day,” he said. “I realised then that that was my way to go. My mum and dad are good at sports and I’ve got two older brothers who drilled into me how to play. I’m six years younger they made it clear that if I wanted to be involved I was going to get it, so every single game was unbelievably competitive. We’re very competitive, my mum most of all, and when we get on to a tennis court or golf course the family stops. That’s how I grew up, every single day of my life I was playing something, and from about 16 it was cricket. It’s part of the Afrikaans culture, playing it hard and doing your best. But it’s very important to stay humble, that was a very big part of my growing up, not getting big-headed.”

AB went to Afrikaans Hoër Seunsskool in Pretoria, across the road from Loftus Versfeld, where Jacques Rudolph was also a student.

AB is one of those boys who most of us knew at school and both resented and wanted to be. He plays golf off a handicap of two, not having had time to maintain his scratch rating, gave up tennis at the age of 13 when he was in the national squad and did not want to leave home to attend the Nick Bollettieri Academy in Florida, and had an offer to play at fly-half for the Blue Bulls (provincial rugby team). Actually, maybe he was better than the average bloke you knew at school.

If things have come easy to AB, he has inherited his culture’s work ethic. Church and sport are twin religions. “Sundays in church, and whenever I’ve got time off church, cricket and golf.”

MAKING HIS DREAMS COME TRUE

“I was eight years old when I saw Jonty’s world famous run out against Australia in the 1992 World Cup. It really made an impression on me. I remember thinking: this is a cool game! I started dreaming of following in Jonty’s footsteps,” he says. Recognising their son’s cricketing aptitude, AB’s parents decided to send their talented son to Affies. “At that stage I participated in various sports and wasn’t sure what I wanted to focus on. However, when I made the South African Colt team at 16, I realised cricket was something I could pursue professionally. I started working harder. I wanted to be the best in my age group.”

While playing for the South African Schools Eleven, he was spotted by the Titans’ coach Dave Nosworthy. Dave gave him a chance to play for this team against Canada in a 2003 World Cup warm-up game. “It was the first time that I played a televised game. I was very nervous, but I thrive under pressure, especially if people are watching. Life is all about grabbing opportunities. I grabbed the opportunity with both hands,” he says.

He was a star of the South African Under-19 team in England in 2003, and then played for the Carrickfergus Cricket Club in Northern Ireland in 2004. AB says this was a big step in his life as it was the first time he lived away from home. He had to learn to become independent and self-sufficient.

Practising in the nets in his first tour of Australia in 2005/06Soon after, AB played for the Northern Titans before being selected to play Test cricket at the tender age of 20 years old. “I love Test cricket,” AB said. “I love the intensity and the pressure, and when I was batting at Durban I couldn’t hear the crowd. When you move from the provincial side into the national side you’ve got doubts, but if the doubts get to you you’ll struggle.”

“Making cricket my career and playing for the national squad are dreams come true. We have been in a learning phase for the past few years—and it has paid off. It’s all about consistency. In the past we may have been guilty of not playing a consistent game. But we have returned to the basics, we know and understand each other and we have worked consistently towards the same goals. We have also stuck to the same ‘brave’ brand of cricket.

[Read more about AB’s cricket career here.]

THE FUTURE

“Personally, I have grown as a player in the past two years. I have found my feet on the field. Performing consistently has also been a personal highlight for me and it remains my number one goal,” says AB. However, he emphasises that his life isn’t just focused on cricket. Off the field, AB loves spending time with his family and friends. He also plays golf (off a five handicap), tennis and the guitar.

Show Them Who You Are CD cover.AB and a friend, Ampie du Preez released the motivational song ‘Show Them Who You Are’ at the end of last year. This song became the anthem of the Proteas’ rise to victory against Australia. By early 2010, AB and Ampie are hoping to release their first CD. “It has always been my dream to make and record music. And we’re not merely dabbling in it—we’ve decided that our CD can’t be anything but great,” says AB who also took piano lessons and sang in the school choir in primary school.

[Read more about AB’s music here.]

In addition, he is a partner in his brothers’ fast food businesses. They will soon start a catering business together. This move is part of his long-term after-cricket strategy. When asked in an interview with SA SportsIllustrated in mid-2009, whether he could see himself playing until he was 40, AB replied, “No. Not to 40. There is no chance. I think there is more to life than just playing cricket for 25 years. I will definitely find the right time to retire. When I start my family I am definitely going to retire. I am not going to wait till I am 40.”

AB is also passionate about his involvement in Francois Pienaar’s Make a Difference Foundation. This organization gives underprivileged children the opportunity to attend the country’s best schools, so he mentors one particular youngster at school in Johannesburg and he donates 100% of his fee for giving weekly radio interviews to M.A.D. He has even arranged to print, at his own cost, postcards with a photograph and space for him to sign, that he can carry in his cricket bag and hand out to the youngsters who stand and wait, craving his autograph. “I am a devout Christian and would like to pursue a goal in this regard one day. I’d like start an initiative through which I can touch people’s lives and make the world a better place in whatever way I can.

At this stage, it is still just a dream, but I see it as the measure of true success. I can’t just live for myself.” When talking to AB you get the feeling that it is only a matter of time before this dream also becomes a reality. Realising goals is all about self belief and hard work, he says. “Success is 99% self belief. You have to be confident in your abilities. And hard work comes naturally if you have a passion for something.”

– Information compiled from various sources including AB’s Official Site, Keo.co.za, The Independent & MotorPics.