Lahore                 -            Pakistan’s opening batsman Abid Ali has said that the day when he hammered a hundred against Australia in his debut One-Day International (ODI) was remarkable day of his life.

Abid Ali is the only Pakistani batsman, who slammed hundreds in both his debut innings in ODI as well as Test cricket. He struck the century against Australia in the fourth match of the five-match ODI series at United Arab Emirates (UAE) on March 29, 2019 and later on he earned the honour of making debut ton in the longest format during the series against Sri Lanka at Rawalpindi Cricket Stadium.

Talking exclusively to The Nation, Abid said: “When the then head coach Mickey Arthur gave me go-ahead to play the fourth ODI against Australia, I was very delighted and I had made up my mind to give out my best during the match. I played with cool and calm and succeeded in smashing the debut century against Australia. It also gave me confidence and further strengthened my belief that hard work always pays off.”

About his Test debut ton, he said: “The debut century in the Test match against Sri Lanka was also momentous moment of my life. And the more interesting thing was that I made it at the home ground in front of local crowd, who kept on cheering for me and supported me well, which boosted my morale and confidence and helped me complete another debut hundred.”

Lauding the role of Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) in conducting the league stage of the Pakistan Super League (PSL-5) successfully, Abid said: “All the stake-holders including the armed forces, sponsors, local and international players, the enthusiastic crowd which reached the stadiums in huge numbers and especially the PCB played key role in making the PSL a success and an international brand. We all witnessed very enthralling and exciting matches throughout the league round of the league.

“The best thing in this PSL’s edition was conduct of all it’s matches in Pakistan. The maximum utilisation of cricket grounds across the country attracted more youth towards this game of gentlemen and it will further enhance their love and passion for the game. Hopefully, more talent will adopt cricket as a profession and serve the country at higher level,” he added.

Abid also thanked Lahore Qalandars for including him in the squad for the last round matches, which unfortunately couldn’t take place due to coronavirus pandemic. About this dangerous disease, the cricketer said: “It is my message to all that please stay at home and stay safe. Strictly follow the precautionary measures as it is the only way to save them from coronoavirus.”

When asked about his routine during his stay at home, Abid said: “I am working regularly on my fitness and doing work out accordingly to keep me fit and healthy. Whenever the cricketing activities restore in the country, I will be fully ready to serve my country once again.”