AB de Villiers has said that being released by Delhi Daredevils after the 2010 IPL season came as a ‘huge surprise’ to him, as he had previously been told he had been retained by the franchise.
Following a week of high drama in IPL 2024 trading season, in which Hardik Pandya made the swap back to Mumbai Indians and several other high profile names were released, De Villiers has opened up on his own story of being let go by a franchise.
Speaking on his YouTube channel, De Villiers said: “When I played in the 2010 season, I got called into the office and was told ‘you are going to get retained, young AB de Villiers’. I sat alongside David Warner in that meeting. It came as a huge surprise to me a week or two later when I realised I had been released. So the communication wasn’t great back in the day, that must be different these days but it’s not a nice feeling.
“You’re unsure of your career, at that time in 2010 I think I only played five games in that IPL season so a lot of doubts crept up in my mind. But I did have a very good international season. I kept playing good cricket and luckily for me the auction happened and I got picked up by RCB. That changed my life forever, so great memories with regards to that.”
De Villiers played seven matches in the 2010 IPL season and scored 111 runs with a high score of 45. He scored 312 runs from 16 matches for RCB the following season before breaking into the elite during the 2012 season, striking at over 160.
“But when it comes to the auction, you actually pick it up on Twitter as it was called in those days or X now,” De Villiers continued. “So you all know with the auction a lot of players will be keeping a close eye on the website, on the IPL T20 website, also on Twitter. That’s where I got the news that I would be picked up by RCB. I have fond memories of that but I can tell you your heart beats a thousand times a minute and you are so nervous and the next minute I got a call from Virat and all the guys congratulating me on getting picked up by RCB.
“So keep an eye on all of the released players. It’s not the end of the road for them, they will just have a very interesting December where they’ll keep a close eye on that auction and they’ll have their phones in their hand all day hoping to get picked up.”
The mini-auction for the 2024 IPL will take place on December 19.
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