Johannesburg - There were more doubts on Wednesday surrounding the future of Proteas Test captain AB de Villiers.
Reports had surfaced during the Boxing Day Test in Durban that the 31-year-old was considering his international commitments, and that still seemed to be the case when he addressed media in Johannesburg on the eve of the third Test against England.
One thing is certain… De Villiers wants to play international cricket for as long as possible.
But there are clearly things that he is struggling with, and workload is undoubtedly the one that needs the most immediate attention if the Proteas are to get the most out of their star player.
“There has been a few rumours floating around and in most rumours there is a little bit of truth,” De Villiers said in what was a strikingly open account of what he is going through.
“It’s not just in the last while… for two or three years now I’ve been searching for the answers to play a little bit less cricket, one way or another, to keep myself fresh and to keep enjoying the game.
“I’ve found myself on the pitch every now and then in the past few years, not too often, not enjoying myself as much as I should be and that raises concerns within myself.”
De Villiers will captain the Proteas in the next two Tests against England after Hashim Amla’s shock decision to step down, but he is not sure if he will be leading the side after this series.
“I’m still very committed… to the job, I’m not sure. Obviously these two Test matches for now is all I’m focusing on and then there’s a nice big break of six months before we play Test cricket again, so lots of things can happen before then,” said De Villiers.
“I don’t want to commit myself to too much before then but for now I’m as committed as I can be and very hungry to make a success of these two Test matches.”
De Villiers called on the ICC to tackle the problem of players being overworked.
“I think it’s a growing concern for the ICC and they’ve definitely been talking about it for the last few years… to find the right kind of structure to keep all the guys fresh,” he said.
“And obviously international cricket is the main cricket you want to play, especially Test cricket. We all want to be part of that… huge traditions and culture in this format.
“There are big tournaments going on in the world at the moment and some of them you can’t ignore because financially they make a huge difference in our lives and obviously you’ve got to look after that side of it as well.