De Villiers, who has been associated with RCB since 2011, said while speaking in a video on Royal Challengers Bangalore’s (RCB) official App, "We are going to have some world-beaters in this edition, we will have Finch, Moeen Ali, Adam Zampa and Josh Philippe. I am looking forward to connecting with Josh, I see a lot of similarities between the way he plays when I was younger.
"The four guys joining us will add to what we have created here and that is a very special team environment. I am excited about Josh, I watched him play for the Sydney Sixers, he takes the new ball on, he is a very talented player, I have heard Gilchrist say really some good things about him,” de Villiers, considered among the best batsmen of his time in international cricket, added.
While de Villiers admitted that the crowds which provide a different atmosphere to a cricket game will definitely be missed, he also stated that he used to playing in front of empty stadiums.
“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.
“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,” he further explained.
According to the ex-Proteas batsman, the heat in the UAE will pose a challenge for the players. He recalled the Test match at Chennai when Virender Sehwag smashed a triple hundred.
“I am not really used to these type 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 right now. It is important to have energy and the weather will definitely have a part,” he went on to state.
--By A Cricket Correspondent