ISLAMABAD - All-round sensation Ali Imran looks forward to play in the 4th edition of Pakistan Super League (PSL) and then to fulfill his ultimate aim of representing the country at international level.

Ali Imran, 20, represented Pakistan Television (PTV) in the country’s premier domestic tournament Quaid-e-Azam Trophy and Quaid-e-Azam One-Day Cup 2018-19, where he not only batted brilliant but also bowled well and played key role in his team’s triumphs.

Talking to The Nation, Ali said: “I grateful to Dr Nauman Niaz for providing me with such a platform and also thankful to my coach Test cricketer Muhamamd Wasim and my trainer Ghulam Mustafa Rana for making me a better cricketer. Unfortunately, despite scoring loads of runs and taking ample wickets in different leagues and domestic competitions, I was never provided an opportunity to showcase my talent and skills but credit goes to Dr Nauman, who offered me a contract to represent PTV.

“I have learnt a lot from Muhammad Wasim, as I have played at ‘Muhammad Wasim International Academy’ and toured UAE and Sri Lanka with great Imran Nazir and former Test cricketer Rana Naved-ul-Hassan. They fully guided and supported me, which helped me earn man-of-the-match award against mighty Indian side in the first-ever international tour in UAE,” he added.

He said in 2016, finally the jinx was broken and he was given debut by his parent Islamabad Region in the Quaid Trophy. “I had a very good first season and managed to take wickets as well in One-Day Cup, but I had to sit out in the very next season in 2017, reasons best known to Islamabad Region. It was once again PTV, which included me in One-Day squad.

“It was not a dream start for me as I only managed 70 odds runs and took 4 wickets, but PTV kept faith in me and after scoring loads of runs in the Faisalabad One-Day Tournament, where lot of international players were in action, I managed to win two man-of-the-match awards, the second one in the final. PTV awarded me contract for 2018-19 and from here, I never looked back and scored 430 runs in 9 matches, including two hundreds. I also took 8 wickets, including 4-30 against Wapda.”

The young sensation said he must admit that playing alongside Abdul Razzaq helped him in becoming more aggressive bowler. “I opened the innings in all the One-Day matches and it was a real treat to face top bowlers of the country and score runs. It was highly unfortunate that after scoring a massive ton in the semifinals against HBL, I lost my wicket or else, we would have been playing the final. But one always learn from his mistakes.

“Now I have offers of getting a chance to play in the PSL. I would love to play in the mega PSL-4, which has provided so many super stars to Pakistan cricket. If provided with an opportunity, I won’t disappoint and will try to score loads of runs and get ample wickets to guide my franchise to crucial victories,” he added.

The all-rounder said that he would love to be part of the shortest version of the game as he feels the T20 cricket best suits his style of play. “I am also keen to play in the longer formats like Test and One-Day Internationals. I have been following cricket since I was only 8, as my father is also a cricket administrator and also runs a cricket academy. It was his dream and passion which pushed me to do more and more to be able to reach new milestones.

“I know there is always a mentor required and I feel lucky that such great past stars are helping me in making me better and better. Maximum part of the domestic cricket is played in Islamabad and Rawalpindi. If players like me continue to get chances, Pakistan cricket team will soon get countless future stars,” Ali concluded.