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AB, Rabada lose no.1 player rankings, AB apologises to SA for Champs Trophy exit

By Marc Jacobson - Jun 14, 2017
AB, Rabada lose no.1 player rankings, AB apologises to SA for Champs Trophy exit

Proteas ‘captain courageous’, AB de Villiers and young blitz, Kagiso Rabada have both slipped from their respective number one spot ICC ODI player rankings, after both their recent ICC Champs Trophy slump in form.

South Africa saw a meagre exit to the competition after woeful losses to India (lost by eight wickets) and Pakistan (lost by 19 runs D/L Method), and this was not helped by the underperforming strides of certain individuals, specifically de Villiers and Rabada, who have set the bar high for themselves.

With the chokers tag once again playing stake to South Africa, their two main front-runners did not deliver the way they were supposed to and one could argue that it may be England’s cricketing conditions that have stifled them.

Heading into the competition, de Villiers scored 124 runs with an average of 62.00 in the Proteas’ three-match ODI Series against England, but in the Champs Trophy, managed to only score 20 runs in the three group ODI’s, at an average of 6.67.

As a result, de Villiers lost his number one ODI Batting ranking, and was replaced by India’s Virat Kholi, who in comparison scored 157 runs in his three group matches, which included two not outs. The Proteas Captain, has as a result now slipped to third, behind Australia’s David Warner and Kholi.

Rabada had only just achieved his number one ODI Bowling ranking just before the tournament, after a stellar bowling performance in the Proteas’ third ODI against England, saw him achieve figures of 4/39.

In the three-match tournament for South Africa, Rabada only managed to take one wicket in his three spells, while expending 116 runs. His teammate and top spinner in the world, Imran Tahir, maintained his second-rank on the overall ODI Bowling rankings, while Rabada slipped to fourth, with Australia's Mitchell Starc leapfrogging him at third.

His teammate, Josh Hazlewood, is the new number one ranked after taking nine wickets for 142 runs in their three ODI group games. Unfortunately for them, they also did not qualify for the semi-finals, but largely due to weather hindrance.

South Africa as a team, however, managed to maintain their number one ODI Team ranking, but after yet another ‘choke’, which last saw the Proteas winning any silverware in 1998, when they won the Champs Trophy under Hansie Cronje, de Villiers took to his ‘AB App’ to apologise to his country.

"To all our die-hard fans and to the public that always supports us, I am truly and genuinely sorry about the way we performed during this tournament and we will keep working hard on our game and try and make it right," de Villiers expressed.

 "It's been 48 hours since that horrible defeat against India and looking back we just had a horrible time with the bat." 

"We had two low scores against Pakistan and India, we never really gave our bowlers the opportunity to defend those totals, so it's very disappointing," he added.

Since last winning any sort of ICC event or trophy in 1998, the Proteas have now ‘choked’ in an amassed seven Champs Trophies and five ICC Cricket World Cups.

Image: AB de Villiers getting run out against India.