AB de Villiers in action for the Tshwane Spartans against the Cape Town Blitz during the Mzansi Super League. Photo: Chris Ricco/BackpagePix

As unlikely as it may be, there is still time for AB de Villiers to make a dramatic appearance for the Proteas at the World Cup – but at the moment, he is only dealing in T20 runs.

The 35-year-old former South African captain, who hung his international bat last year, has signed with English county side Middlesex to play in the T20 Blast in July.

De Villiers will initially feature in the first seven games for the Lord’s-based side, and will return to Middlesex later – ostensibly for the playoffs – if they get that far.

“I have always wanted to play county cricket, and I am very much looking forward to joining Middlesex for the Vitality Blast,” said De Villiers, who has incredibly never played domestic cricket in England in a stellar career.

“Playing at Lord’s is always a wonderful privilege, and I’m looking forward to the match at Richmond, a beautiful ground in south-west London. That will be a great experience.”

Middlesex coach Stuart Law added: “It’s exciting for all here at Middlesex to announce the arrival of AB de Villiers for the T20 Blast this season.

“It’s a great opportunity for some of our younger players to pick the brain of one of the best players to have graced the game of cricket, and for the support staff to work with him as well.

“I look forward to working with AB this season, and can’t wait to watch one of my favourite modern-day batsman up close and personal.”

De Villiers is currently playing for the Lahore Qalandars in the Pakistan Super League, while he will also take part in the IPL for the Royal Challengers Bangalore this year.


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