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South African cricket star AB de Villiers

The legacy of AB de Villiers – his finest moments

One of AB de Villiers most famous quotes was 'you live for those pressure moments'.
It is a line that will likely define the South African superstar, who has shocked the world by retiring from all forms of international cricket.
There have been many greats in the modern era, the likes of Sachin Tendulkar and Ricky Ponting will be remembered as all-time greats.
But de Villiers boasted a different brand of excellence, he was a player you knew could make things happen in almost any scenario.
He was the wicket all bowlers prized and a fielder/wicket keeper that meant batsmen were never safe.
AB de Villiers will retire with 8765 runs from 114 Tests, 9577 runs from 228 ODI matches and 1672 from 78 T20 internationals - and the respect and admiration from all quarters of world cricket.
Here are just some of the moments that made his career so special.

The fastest 100 of all time

AB de Villiers saved perhaps one of his greatest ever knocks for close to last.
In January this year, he ripped into a West Indies attack at The Wanderers to record the fastest ODI century of all time.
In just 44 balls, de Villiers belted 149 runs that included 16 sixes - the equal most in any ODI innings.
His lusty hitting came at the strike rate of 338.63 that guided South Africa to 2-439, which obviously the Windies had no hope of mowing down.

Catches that defy physics

When it comes to fielding, names like Ricky Ponting and Jonty Rhodes stand out as the masters.
But some of the catches that de Villiers has taken over the years defy belief. Here are some of his best.

Taking it to India, in India

As a 24-year-old man in 2008, de Villiers packed his kit bag for the most daunting road trip in cricket - touring India.
Faced with raging turners, roaring home supporters and the formidable spin attack of Anil Kumble and Harbhajan Singh, de Villiers quickly set out to make a name for himself.
His 213* at Ahmedabad off just 333 balls was an innings that was as powerful as it was measured in tricky conditions, played with the confidence that de Villiers would become known for. It was the first time any South African had scored a double ton against India.
It paved the way for a huge South African win in a nation where visitors seldom find joy.

Whacking the Aussies at the WACA

Touring countries know that winning in Perth on an Australian tour is close to mission impossible.
With its hard, bouncy track that is perfectly suited to the Aussie bowlers, the WACA has seen even the best travelling batsmen come unstuck.
Not de Villiers, though. In 2012 he strode to the crease after making just four runs in the opening innings.
He then tore apart an Aussie attack featuring Mitchell Starc and Mitchell Johnson to pile on 169 from just 184 balls - a total that set South Africa up for a huge win.

AB de Villiers - the bowler

As if being a tremendous strike batsman, efficient wicketkeeper and dazzling fielder wasn't enough, de Villiers was also handy with the ball in hand too.
His gentle right arm efforts have reaped wickets that include Younis Khan, Darren Powell and Australia's Aaron Finch.

AB de Villiers - the pop star?

Move over Brett Lee, there is another cricket player turned musical star in town.
In 2010 de Villiers teamed up with South African singer Ampie du Preez to release Maak Jou Drome Waar (make your dreams come true), a 14 song album with nine tracks in in Afrikaans and five in English.
He even appeared in the film clip for the album's titular single.

About the Author Josh Alston

Josh Alston is a hack with over 12 years industry experience, covering sport across all codes for newspapers and online agencies. Known to frequent grade matches because of their cheap tinnies. Eventually graduated with a Bachelor of Journalism and a Masters in sitting on the hill when the local cricket side was playing. Softball premiership winner, rugby league legend in Year 10 and no stranger to Doomben Racecourse.

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