AB de Villiers will return to Test cricket towards the end of 2017    Getty Images
AB de Villiers will return to Test cricket towards the end of 2017 Getty Images

AB de Villiers has informed of his unavailability for South Africa s tour of England in mid 2017, which will be followed by Bangladesh s tour for two Tests in September-October. De Villiers is targeting return to the South African Test side ahead of their next home season, wherein they will be playing Australia and India, towards the end of this year. Interestingly, de Villiers has informed about his unavailability just a day after Cricket South Africa (CSA) CEO Haroon Lorgat made it amply clear that de Villiers will not get to chose what he wants to play and what he wants to skip, once he is completely fit.

De Villiers has remained in news for the past few days over the speculation of his future in Test cricket. It was earlier reported that he was close to announcing retirement from Test cricket to make sure he remains fit and available for the other formats, but the cricketer rubbished all such reports. Clouds of uncertainty have hovered over de Villiers career for a very long time, and his recent resignation from Test captaincy had only fuelled the speculations further. However, de Villiers has clarified he will continue to play for South Africa across formats and in the Indian Premier League (IPL), since it has become a part of ‘ICC set-up’.

“I’m just not ready yet. I’m aware of my elbow. The surgeon said it will be normal. I’m feeling really confident, de Villiers was quoted as saying by ESPNCricinfo.

“There is a lot of cricket but the situation has changed for me, my priorities have changed, I don’t expect to just walk back into the team, I will make my runs at the Titans. The bigger and better reason is my priorities have changed. Playing three formats it felt like the world is on my shoulder. The IPL has become part of the ICC set-up, you won’t see me at any other leagues. I’ll only be playing IPL and for South Africa, he added.

The report added that India are set to tour South Africa for four Tests, but the dates are not yet announced. It is believed that CSA are asking India to arrive earlier, in order to schedule matches in the holiday season.