From a factory worker to representing Pakistan at Lord’s: LONDON: Mohammad Abbas, on Sunday, he received the man-of-the-match award for his spectacular performance at Lord’s who right now is ripping the English batting lineup apart at the Mecca of Cricket, Lord’s.
From a factory worker to representing Pakistan at Lord’s
The fast bowler is now enjoying a life where he’s able to do what he loves, but it took a lot of sweating for him to get to this stage.
Born on 10 March 1990 in a small village named Jethi of district Sambrial (Sialkot, Punjab), the early days of his life were not very joyous. But the lad grew up watching some of the greatest fast bowlers of all time like Glenn McGrath and Shaun Pollock and saw them as an inspiration to bowl fast.
His early education and baby steps in cricket took place in Jethi. The more he started learning about the game, his desire to don the Green jersey for Pakistan escalated rapidly. But he had some other family responsibilities to fulfill as well and his road to becoming a cricketer was not an easy path.
Abbas was the eldest son and at a very young age, he was expected to earn bread for his family. He didn’t shy away from that and started working in a welding and leather factory. An incredible performance in the Quaid e Azam trophy at this point in time made him contemplate leaving the country to take the game more seriously, but he prioritized his family.
Life is unpredictable. Nothing can beautifully describe the turnaround than Tom Hanks’ Forrest Gump: “Momma said life is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you’re gonna get.”
Abbas took eight wickets for 64 runs at Lord’s. Previously, in Dublin Test, he bagged nine wickets. Arguably, his inclusion in the team has provided the Pakistani pace attack with some much-needed variation, which it has been missing for long.
Although Abbas’ wish to get his name on the Lord’s honour board could not be fulfilled during this tour. The fast bowler is determined to get into the prestigious list during the next tour. Looking by his form, his talent and his hunger to prove himself. One won’t be surprised if he accomplishes this in the near future.
The right-arm pacer, who hails from a small village of Sambrial town near Sialkot district, reflected on his journey in an interview.
“I was playing domestic cricket for last seven, eight years. I got the chance to get into the national squad after transforming into a mature bowler,” he said. “And I proved my mettle by bagging forty wickets in seven Tests, thanks to Almighty.”
Abbas takes pride in the fact that he did not ‘parachute’ into the national squad but made space in the team having gone through a process.
“Like every other cricketer, I also wanted to become a Test cricketer. Today, with the grace of Almighty, I received the man-of-the-match award.”
Asked what is next for him now, the star bowler said: “I want to make my place in the ODI and T20 squad.”
He also worked for registering properties at the court for a couple of years. But then, life always throws a lemon at you at an unexpected juncture. His career started taking an interesting turn when he got an opportunity to play for the district U19 side.
His lawyer friends didn’t allow him initially to participate in that tournament as his age was well above 19, but eventually, he participated and made his mark.
It took him a lot of time to break into the Pakistan International side, but with his exploits at the domestic levels, he wasn’t knocking the selectors’ doors, he was breaking them open.
At the age of 27, he made his Test debut against West Indies and is now a crucial member of the side. Talking about how he approaches the game, he said “It does not really matter how the cricket is, you still will have to put in efforts.
While I am bowling, I steer clear of the batsman’s weaknesses and strengths which make it easier for me to oust my opposition.” It really was a topsy-turvy ride for Mohammad Abbas towards quenching his thirst to play for Pakistan.