Proteas

Hobart Hurricanes want AB for Big Bash

AB de Villiers (Getty)
AB de Villiers (Getty)

Cape Town -The Hobart Hurricanes have declared their interest in AB de Villiers for next year's Big Bash T20 competition.

Cricket Tasmania CEO Nick Cummins told ABC.net that he is interested in signing De Villiers for the 2018/19 edition.

The Hurricanes are hoping that their head coach, Gary Kirsten, could help lure the 33-year-old Down Under.

"We've obviously got an inside running with (coach) Gary Kirsten. I've had a chat with Gary and he's going to sound out AB as well," said Cummins.

De Villiers has been scouted by another Australian team, the Sydney Thunder, who are reportedly contemplating him as a replacement for banned West Indian all-rounder Andre Russell for the upcoming edition.

Thunder, coached by fellow South African and close friend Paddy Upton, have reportedly been interested in De Villiers for quite some time.

Cummins is not convinced that the Thunder will sign De Villiers with just under four months to go before the commencement of BBL07 starting on December 19.

If De Villiers opts for a Big Bash contract this season, it will mean that he is unlikely to play in the Test series against India, which will likely begin in January 2018.

"I would be surprised if AB played Big Bash this summer," Cummins told the Australian publication.

Cummins said it could cost upwards of A$100 000 (R1.04 million) to tempt De Villiers to sign with Hobart.

"Certainly from a salary cap perspective next year, he's a player that we would be able to afford to get," he said.

De Villiers' commitment, or lack of commitment, to the Test side has come into play after he decided to take a sabbatical from the longer format of the game in order to focus on limited-overs cricket.

South Africa's ODI captain has plied his trade in various international T20 leagues, including the Indian Premier League for the Royal Challenges Bangalore and for the Barbados Tridents in the Caribbean Premier League in 2016.

He will also take part in South Africa's inaugural T20 Global League competition as the marquee player for the Pretoria-based team.

De Villiers plans to meet up with Cricket South Africa (CSA) this month to make a final decision about his future.

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