Fairly-tale script ends, now for the big league

-AliMohamed eagerly awaits opportunity at the first class level

By Royston Alkins

When Ronaldo AliMohamed wasn’t initially named in the 2018 West Indies Under – 19 World Cup squad many were surprised since he had produced quite a number of match-winning all-round performances to lead Guyana to championship honours.

His showing suggested that he was certainly the kind of horses – for- courses player to exploit the conditions in New Zealand.

 AliMohamed at that juncture felt slighted and he experienced an emotional roller-coaster.  Nevertheless, good sense prevailed and coach Graeme West as Ali-Mohamed recalled, contacted and invited him as an additional member to attend a training camp in Grenada. 

It was quite a fairy-tale script from then as AliMohamed made the cut to participate in the ICC Under -19 showpiece event.

He still remembers the call he got from West and from that moment on, he vowed not to take his career lightly.

AliMohamed, now 21, had a brief stint with the senior Guyana side during the most recent Regional 50 overs tournament. He collected two caps and, after a taste of the big league, the tremendously talented right-hander is craving more. Simply put, he wants to earn his spot in the Guyana Jaguars squad.

CHRISTCHURCH, NEW ZEALAND – JANUARY 07: Ronaldo Alimohamed poses during the West Indies ICC U19 Cricket World Cup Headshots Session at Rydges Christchurch on January 7, 2018 in Christchurch, New Zealand. (Photo by Hannah Peters-ICC/ICC via Getty Images)

 “I am very hungry to get into Guyana’s set up and to do my best,” the young man told Stabroek Sports of his immediate focus.

 “I have been working on my all-round game and my fitness, I am doing some extra work at home and at my cricket club.

Asked about his chances he said: “Well, to me, I am not really far away from making my debut [first class] for Guyana, I’m one step away. I just need to keep knocking on the door more often and my plan is to keep training hard, score runs, take wickets and work on and off the field,” he added.

 AliMohamed has been in and around the Guyana Jaguars set up, perhaps to give him an insight into the team’s winning culture. Guyana won the regional first-class title for five consecutive years up until they were dethroned this year.

AliMohamed has been a consistent performer at the domestic club level and although he may find it difficult to break into the team at this juncture because of the presence of a number of other seasoned all-rounders (Chris Barnwell, Raymon Reifer, Keemo Paul, and Romario Shepherd), the young man’s confidence is certainly uplifting. The willingness of Coach Esuan Crandon to have him around the setup is another encouraging sign.

Others, including Leon Johnson, a former test player and the current Guyana Jaguars skipper, have also taken stock of AliMohamed’s highly rated pedigree, ensuring that he meets his full potential.

“Some persons are mentoring me both on and off the field like, Leon [Johnson], Winston [Forrester] and Reon King; they usually talk to me about what it’s like when you reach at the first-class level and encourage me to keep doing the right things.”

 He also singled out the inputs of Crandon and Julian Moore and some of the senior guys in the Guyana team who are encouraging him. AliMohammed, like a true all-rounder, highlighted Ben Stokes – the Wisden Cricketer of the year as a player he would certainly like to emulate. (Stabroek News)