LAHORE - Imam-ul-Haq, Pakistan Under-19’s young left-handed batsman, has expressed that his interest in the game grew because of his uncle and former Pakistan captain, Inzamam-ul-Haq, and also revealed that the legendary batsman has given him some previous tips during the on-going ICC Under-19 World Cup 2012.

The junior event is currently being played in Australia, where the Green Shirts have qualified for the quarter-finals and look one of the hot-favourites to clinch the trophy for the third time in their history. The 16-year-old budding cricketer happens to be Inzamam’s nephew and just like his uncle, Imam is also considered to be an extremely talented individual. Apart from being a gifted left-handed top-order batsman, the youngster is more than handy with his right-arm leg-breaks.

He played a crucial role in Pakistan’s victory in the recently concluded junior Asia Cup, where they shared the trophy with India. While talking to Pakpassion, the left-handed batsman revealed that he started playing the game while watching his uncle, who is a great source of inspiration for him. Imam, who is presently in Australia, expressed that Inzamam called him and gave him some tips to perform well on the global stage.

“My interest in cricket developed because of my uncle obviously. I used to watch my uncle play for Pakistan for such a long period of time. That’s where the passion grew from - I always wanted to be like him. He has always encouraged me. He has always given me a lot of confidence - always encourages me, and motivates me telling me that I can do it,” the youngster said. “He even contacted me here to give me words of advice!”

With more than 20 thousand runs at the ultimate stage of the game and 35 international hundreds, Inzamam is amongst the best batsman produced by Pakistan over the last six decades.

Most of the Pakistan players ignore their studies after taking up cricket as their bread and butter but Imam is an exception, who maintains that keeping up with studies while playing professional sport is possible. “It is very tough to manage studies and cricket simultaneously, but it’s not impossible,” Imam added.