LAHORE - Professional Boxer Mohammed Ali has urged upon the world’s sports fraternity to send their teams to play in Pakistan, which is a peaceful country and sports loving country.

Talking to media here on Tuesday, Ali asked international players to come and compete in Pakistan to play their role in bringing international sports back here. “Pakistan is now a peaceful country amid determined efforts of the Army which has restored peace and tranquility in the troubled areas and it safe for every international sport,” said Ali, who is the only professional boxer in the arena battling with TYPE1 diabetes.

Ali was diagnosed diabetic at the tender age of four. “At the age of 13 I joined boxing and decided to fight on both fronts. I was determined to defeat my condition. When I applied for registration as a professional boxer I was rejected on the grounds that British Boxing Board Of control (BBBoFC) doesn’t grant Licences to boxers suffering from TYPE1 or TYPE2 diabetes.

“I challenged the BBBoFC and after a strenuous struggle of three years, I succeeded in getting my Licence granted in May this year (2018). I owe a big thank you to My Mentor & Manager Asad Shamim, My Lawyer Marium Razzaq and Dr Ian Gallen, UK’s leading endocrinologist who assisted me in my difficult time.

“Since receiving his Licence as a professional boxer, Ali has fought and won all his three bouts. He defeated Andrej Sepur of Lithuania in September, Danny Little in November and Ben fields on December 8. He now wishes to become a first diabetic professional boxing champion in the world and planned to challenge world boxers in 2020 for the title,” he added.

Ali said that Pakistan possesses immense talent in every sport including boxing. But the culture of favouritism and liking/disliking has tarnished that talent. “If that culture is curbed effectively, Pakistan can receive many medals in international sports,” he hoped.

Ali has the desire and passion to play his role in the promotion of boxing in Pakistan. “I wish to start a grooming program for the upcoming boxers and plan to establish modern academies in Karachi, Quetta, Islamabad and Lahore where renowned international boxers would train and coach the youngsters. He said that he intends to start an academy in all provinces.”

Ali lamented that the new generation in Pakistan is turning to drugs and appealed PM Imran Khan to encourage sports culture in Pakistan. “The government should establish sports complexes in the country to save youngsters from drugs. Besides, there is a need for establishing academies in educational institutions. He also appealed to the government to give jobs to sportsmen on a merit and priority basis.”