CARDIFF – Once the matter of the national coach is resolved, AB de Villiers will have a showdown meeting with Cricket South Africa in August, where the rest of his international career will be decided upon.
“We will see what works for both parties (in terms of date), and we are going to have a nice chat about my future, which we haven’t decided on yet,” De Villiers said.
“We are not going to pick and choose games, but we are going to make a final decision about happens for the next few years,” he explained.
Crucially, De Villiers did make it clear that his meeting will happen after the national coach issue is resolved.
“There are quite a few things that are changing in South African cricket at the moment, quite a few things we need to wait for. I don’t even think it’s in my hands what is going to happen,” he pointed out.
“I will wait until the final decision on the coach and things like that are made, then I can also have a chat to CSA, to see where I am going to fit in,” he said.
He will leave with the T20 specialists on Monday, and goes home for the next two months, which will be significant from a personal perspective.
“Over the next two months, I am going to spend a bit of time off at home with the family, I’m going to welcome my new youngster into the world, and obviously look to stay fit. I want to make sure I am ready for September, when Bangladesh come,” he said hopefully.
Ever since De Villiers announced a schedule that omitted the Test series in New Zealand and England, but included the Indian Premier League, the Champions Trophy and the limited-overs portion of the current series against England, speculation was rife about where his international future would go.
During the T20 series against England, he reasoned that his announcement at the beginning of the year had never been about picking and choosing his games, but rather about making sure that he was at the peak of his powers for the really big tournaments.
“It’s my main dream to win a World Cup for South Africa, or to be part of it in one way or another.”
That one way or another comment suggested that he may yet relinquish the captaincy, and focus purely on making runs and starring as a specialist in the middle-order.
Asked if he had given any thought to possibly deputising in the Lord’s Test for his good friend and Test skipper Faf du Plessis, who is about to become a father, De Villiers was clear.
“No. Not at all. I am batting really well at moment, and really enjoying that. I love scoring runs, and that is all I am going to miss over the next two months,” he offered.
As things stand, South Africa will go into their warm-up match ahead of the Test series without their captain, their star player and their coach, all for different reasons.
The decisions that are made in August could very well change the landscape in South African cricket, as the 2019 World Cup becomes the next mission.
It will be intriguing to see how many faces from the class of the 2017 Champions Trophy will still be there in two years’ time.