March 28, 2023

Forget grounds and nets and training. If you want to break records in cricket, get hooked on Instagram. It certainly did the trick for Dewald Brevis who took the world by storm on Monday, cracking 162 off 57 balls in a T20 game in South Africa. The 19-year old batter’s shots bear a striking resemblance to AB de Villiers and it is entirely by design.

“From young – and still now – I watch lots of videos even on Instagram about AB and all these guys, [as to] how they hit the ball,” Brevis told Supersport after hoisting his domestic team, the Titans, up to an eye-watering 271 for 3 against the Knights in the CSA T20 Challenge. “And I like AB’s natural bat swing. And back in your head, you you get a visual of how the ball goes, how the bat falls and everything. So I try to watch as most as much as possible, and to just also be myself.”

A quiet game in Potchefstroom quickly gained global acclaim as Brevis began smashing records. He recorded the fifth-fastest hundred in T20 cricket – getting to the landmark off just 35 balls – and kicked on to score the third-highest score ever in the shortest format.

“Even as a young boy, I have always wanted to hit the ball as far as possible,” Brevis said. “And for me, from the start it’s always [about being] positive and fearless. You don’t want to go on the reckless side, but just play ball by ball, stay positive and be in the moment. I just stayed in the moment… I’m always looking to hit boundaries. And if it’s a good ball, then I respect it. The thing that stood out for me was that when those balls weren’t there to hit, I just took it nice and calm, and just knocked it for one.”

Brevis’ 162 is now the highest score in the CSA T20 Challenge or the CSA T20 Provincial Cup, bettering Pieter Malan’s 140* for West Province during the 2014-15 domestic season.

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