ISLAMABAD   -  MNA from Pasror, Sialkot Ali Zahid Khan has announced his arrival on the big scene with a massive 139 runs innings for the Parliamentarians cricket team in the floodlight cricket match played here at Pindi Stadium on late Friday night.

Ali Zahid, who had played a lot of cricket for Aitcheson College, Government College, UK University of Wales, Cardiff, club and league cricket, Glamorgan Welsh U-25 cricket and also remained captain of P&T Gymkhana, said he played his club cricket from P&T Gymkhana for 18 years. “I toured UK, Australia, South Africa, Zimbabwe, India, Sharjah and played a lot of cricket there and also represented LCCA in U-19 cricket. I played in Singapore and Hong Kong as well.

“As far as 1st Inter-Parliamentary Cricket World Cup is concerned, which is scheduled to be held in England from July 8 to 15 this year, we have bright chances of upstaging any given team. We have great combination of experience and youth and under dynamic leadership of captain Zain Qureshi, our players are geared up to deliver,” he added.

Ali said: “It doesn’t matter whether we are playing regularly or not, as once a cricketer is always a cricketer. I have been playing with the Parliamentarians team for last 20 days or so and I found them really hardworking. I would like to especially mention the name of Speaker Asad Qaiser, who remains present at training sessions to motivate us.

“We have played three practice matches. Although we lost all the three, yet all were very close ones and with each match, we are getting into shape and coming closer and closer to the fitness levels. We only lack match fitness, as all our players are very passionate and eager to lift the title for Pakistan,” he added.

He said that the Parliamentarians team will take time to get into rhythm. “We lack in fitness levels, while our fielding is also not up to the mark, but I would like to thank PCB and IRCA President Shakil Shaikh for providing us top class coaches, who are working day and night to get us into shape. “The training under floodlights is a different experience for majority of our players and it is helping them a great deal to come to the terms. Ayaz Akbar Yousafzai, who is PCB level-III coach, is very passionate and working very hard with each and every player. It is hoped that such a great training will help us do well in the mega event,” he added.

Ali said: “I feel Diamond ground is one of the best grounds in the country. It is helping us very much to adjust to the conditions. We played against mighty NBP team at Pindi Stadium last night and we lost to a close margin of 5 runs. NBP, batting first, scored a massive 196 in 20 overs and we almost chase down the target, as we managed to score 191 but unluckily, we fell short of just 5 runs.

“I managed to score 138 off only 68 balls with the help of 14 boundaries and 11 sixes. I went to open the innings and was out in the final over. It hurts not to take the team home, but I am slowly getting into form, which is very important for the chances of our team in the mega event in UK,” he added.

“Eight teams are taking part and we have to play against every team and top four teams will qualify for the semifinals. The 15-over-aside matches will be played till final, which will of 20 overs. We want to return with the World Cup. We also want Sarfraz Ahmed to return home with World Cup and all our prayers are with him,” Ali concluded.