Bengaluru: As AB de Villiers marched in for his 100th Test game, a packed M. Chinnaswamy Stadium went into raptures to cheer their Royal Challengers Bangalore star.
But on the top row of the ‘P’ Terrace stands, a tense de Villiers’ family and friends stayed in their seats with South Africa in deep trouble at 45/3 when ABD walked in.
Holding onto baby AB de Villiers III, a visibly anxious Daniella, the wife of ABD said, “Back home, he keeps talking about these fans. I wanted to experience it myself and also this was his 100th Test game. This is a very special venue for him. He loves it here.”
De Villiers came up with a composed and yet an entertaining 85 (105b) to steer his side to a decent total before being dismissed by Ravindra Jadeja. “I am a bit disappointed but he did well and wickets fell one after another,” said Abraham de Villiers, his father.
His father was taken by surprise as fans kept chanting ABD’s name during his stay in the middle. “ I was a bit surprised. I saw spectators actually mourn when they given him out. But as I said, this is his second home ground,” mentioned the senior ABD, who played rugby at the club level.
Even his mother Millie, cheering every run and soaking in the atmosphere, enjoyed watching her son bat. “It was wonderful batting from AB and wonderful bowling from India. “The important thing is this is AB’s second home. He’s playing for RCB for a couple of years now and he is here every year. He’s part of RCB and he’s one of your guys,” she added.
If not for cricket, de Villiers Sr admitted his son would’ve picked up golf, tennis or badminton instead of cricket. “I must say golf. I was always thinking (of that) lying in bed. I see he’s striking the ball so well and there were a couple of sports. We thought it was going to be tennis. But cricket came in the way. Even today during his spare time, ABD enjoys a round of golf. “He’s calm in batting but not golf. Strange,” claimed de Villiers. The parents felt ABD should learn Hindi. “The only thing left is that we must teach him to speak some Hindi.”
Meanwhile, John Swart, ABD’s father-in-law, on his first visit to India, was very keen to watch him play in Bengaluru. “I’m a very proud father-in-law. I have always watched the RCB games on TV. This is my first visit to Bangalore and also his 100th Test game,” he said.
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