AB’s Test future in the balance

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Protea coach Russell Domingo has indicated that AB de Villiers future in the Test team will need to be discussed once the star man returns from injury.

De Villiers has been absent for the entire 2016/17 season so far having injured his elbow while playing in the Caribbean Premier League earlier this year.

According to ESPN Cricinfo Domingo said: “We need to sit down with him and plan his future.

“AB has got to make that decision, I can’t decide on whether he plays or not.

“When I say that, I mean AB has got to make the decision about whether he is available and the selectors have got to make the decision whether he plays. He has obviously got to make some decision about his future in cricket.”

New Test skipper Faf du Plessis had cast doubt over the future of South Africa’s best batsman in the longest format of the game, indicating that his long time friend was unsure about playing Test cricket.

Du Plessis said: “I’m not sure how AB will feel in terms of Test cricket so we will have to see.

“We are excited to have him back in the one-day team. I am hoping he decides to play [Tests] for us. He is obviously a world-class batter and I, as a captain, would love to have him as a leader in our team, and obviously as a batter. He is a fantastic player.”

Du Plessis conceded that he was not certain when or if De Villiers would return adding: “He hasn’t played for a while. The plan was for him to play in this series and then the one-dayers start, but now we will see what AB’s plans are – whether he wants to play.”

It is tough to see where De Villiers would fit into the Test XI with the side playing well as a unit and only Temba Bavuma misfiring in the batting lineup but the selectors have given strong indications that the Lion’s batsman would be retained.

There is a possibility that De Villiers could decide to chase the money of lucrative T20 leagues to offset the loss of sponsorhip money should he abandon Test cricket, with his MRF bat deal conditional on him playing all three formats.

De Villiers will play a List A game for Northerns next Sunday to prove his fitness ahead of the ODI series against Sri Lanka and a decision will be made soon afterwards.