MUMBAI (Reuters) - South African batsman AB de Villiers has recovered from a severe bout of viral flu and will return to action for the Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) in the Indian Premier League on Saturday after missing the last two games due to illness.
The free-scoring right-handed batsman will replace compatriot Quinton de Kock in the team for the clash against Chennai Super Kings in Pune with the wicketkeeper travelling back to South Africa to attend a wedding.
“AB is back fit,” RCB coach Daniel Vettori told reporters.
“Quinton is away from this game ... he is unavailable for this match. So probably, it’s an easy decision for us to make. One comes in for the other.”
Bangalore, led by India captain Virat Kohli, are currently sixth in the popular eight-team Twenty20 tournament and need a string of positive results to keep their hopes alive of making the playoffs.
They defeated champions Mumbai Indians on Tuesday and hope to carry the momentum into the match against the Mahendra Singh Dhoni-led Chennai side, who are in second place.
The 34-year-old de Villiers, known for his ‘360-degree’ batting ability, said he had been hit hard by the illness.
“The last four days have been a blur I have been suffering from severe viral flu, one of the most debilitating illnesses I have ever experienced,” he wrote in a column published in Friday’s Times of India newspaper.
“Aside from one visit to the hospital, I have barely left my hotel room. Sleep has been almost impossible, and the migraine headaches have been extreme. The good news is that my condition is now improving every day ...
“It was frustrating for me to miss two home matches at the Chinnaswamy, but I was able to follow both games on television ... even if, to be honest, most of the time, it was only possible to watch with one eye open because of the throbbing pain in my head.”
Reporting by Sudipto Ganguly; editing by Peter Rutherford