Very close to 10 out of 10 - De Villiers lauds 'fantastic' Tahir


AB de Villiers rated Imran Tahir's performance as "very close to 10 out of 10" after the spinner starred in South Africa's ICC Champions Trophy victory over Sri Lanka at The Oval.

Hashim Amla's 25th one-day international hundred underpinned the Proteas' score of 299-6 on Saturday, before Tahir played the lead role in ensuring Sri Lanka's chase was an unsuccessful one.

The leg-spinner bamboozled a succession of batsmen on his way to impressive figures of 4-27 and was also responsible for a run-out as South Africa limited their opponents to 203.

"Immy is a great asset for us," said South Africa skipper De Villiers in a post-match news conference.

"He takes wickets and is also economical most of the time. He had a fantastic performance today ... very close to 10 out of 10.

"Not only with the ball in hand but that run-out. It always shows me where the player is at when he shows that kind of dedication and commitment in the field."

As is typically the case, Tahir celebrated each of his wickets with gusto, sprinting away in jubilation after the umpire's finger was raised.

"It's great to see," De Villiers added.

"He's just got a lot of passion for this team and he loves playing for South Africa. I love seeing that passion come out when he celebrates his wickets. There's nothing wrong with that.

"He's earned the right to go a little bit overboard sometimes, and it puts a smile an all the team-mates' faces, which is great."