The 13th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL 2020) will be played behind closed doors without the involvement of fans in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) stalwart AB de Villiers said he will miss the RCB fans as the energy comes with their presence.
De Villiers’ liberation for his franchise made him a crowd favourite, mainly due to his incredible yet explosive batting. He played an important part in the success of RCB and would be missing the environment of a crowded M Chinnaswamy Stadium this year.
The Proteas cricketer recalled the time when he used to play domestic cricket where there were just a few fans inside the stadium.
“I think everyone wants to play in front of big stadiums, there is a sort of adrenaline that pumps into you when the crowd gets very loud especially in the Chinnaswamy when the RCB crowd gets going, it gets difficult to stop the RCB side. We will miss that, I won’t say I am not used to it, I have played a lot of cricket in empty stadiums,” AB de Villiers said in a video on Royal Challengers Bangalore’s (RCB) official App.
“I grew up like that, it’s only during the last few years of my international career that I played in front of full stadiums. Even then, every season I used to go back to play domestic cricket and play a four-day game and there were just four-five people sitting inside the stadium. But we will miss the RCB crowd without any doubt,” AB de Villiers added.
I am not really used to these types of conditions: AB de Villiers
The 36-year-old also recalled the Test match that South Africa played against India and Virender Sehwag smashed a triple ton in Chennai in 2008. He also compared the heat in UAE to that Test match.
“I am not really used to these types of conditions, it is very hot, it reminds of me a Test match we played in Chennai where Viru scored 309, that’s the hottest conditions I have ever played in. The humidity is similar to that, when I arrived here, I googled the weather conditions for the next two months here in UAE. It seems to be getting better, I can already feel that it is better to right now. It is important to have energy and the weather will definitely have a part,” AB de Villiers pointed.
Sixty IPL games will be played over 53 days across three venues — Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Sharjah. The opening match of the season will be played on September 19.
This season, both the afternoon and evening matches will be played half an hour earlier than usual.
Bangalore will face Sunrisers Hyderabad (SRH) in their first match of the tournament on September 21.