The 21-year-old South African hit 123 as Hambledon extended their winning start to the Division 2 season to eight games against Bashley (Rydal) seconds at Ridge Meadow.
It was his second SPL ton in eight days, following on from his 168 against Hartley Wintney - Hambledon’s highest SPL individual innings of the 21st century.
De Villiers now boasts a stunning record of 694 league runs at 115.67 from eight innings - 248 more than the next highest scorer across the four tiers of the SPL, Havant’s Chris Stone.
His league innings so far in 2022 are of Bradmanesque proportions - 89, 67, 63 not out, 100, 53, 31 not out, 168 and 123.
He needs just 306 more runs from a possible 10 innings - we are not even halfway through the SPL campaign yet - to become only the fifth batter in Southern League or Southern Premier League history to score 1,000 runs in a single season.
Former Purbrook and Havant batter Will Prozesky (1,076 runs, 2005), Neal Parlane (BAT, 1,074, 2003), Erasmus Hendriske (Trojans,1,025, 2003) and Hampshire leg-end Robin Smith (Trojans, 1,015, 1982) are the only four men to have reached four figures since the Southern League was formed in 1969.
In the absence of second top run scorer Dan McGovern, Don’s skipper Spencer Le Clercq promoted himself to open. And, after George Marshall (10) had departed ear-ly, he added 112 for the second wicket with De Villiers before falling for 54.
De Villiers powered on to his latest century, eventually dismissed after hitting 16 fours and a six off 94 balls.
With Bashley conceding 35 wides, Hambledon posted a daunting 293 all out total - the final wicket falling off the last ball of the 50th over. Sam Davies (3-41) and Saif Achakzai (3-49) shared six of the wickets.
While De Villiers could one day play first class cricket, his side boast a player who has already been there and done that.
And it was Ian Turner - the 53-year-old former Hampshire spinner - who removed the Bashley top three en route to 3-34 in his third SPL game of 2022.
Teenage left-armer Shahryar Khan (4-20) impressed after Turner had done the initial damage as the New Forest club - asked to chase a rain revised target of 227 in 35 overs - were bowled out for 192.
Bashley IIs stand-in captain Neil Taylor, currently enjoying his time with Hamp-shire’s 50s side, was pleased with the way his weakened Bash side played on the day.
“We got a 51-run start from Harry Anstee and Piers Scott and were going at seven runs an over while James Trodd (38) and Saif Achakzai (21) were together, but once they were out the run chase was over,” he said.
Hambledon - one of only two clubs in the four tiers of the SPL still boasting a 100 per cent record, alongside Portsmouth & Southsea - are 16 points clear of OTs & Romsey at the top of the table.
Had they not had 20 points deducted for a close season admin error, their lead would be seriously impressive at this stage of the season. Simon Carter, Portsmouth News.