Kolkata, Mar 6: Kolkata's young basketball sensation, Mohammed Ali, was not noticed by anybody when he used to train at the Sports Authority of India (SAI) campus and in another private club (Bowbazar Byam Samity).
It was quite normal that in a state where football and cricket have been the most popular game, a 12-year-old lad would not be able to draw attention by playing basketball.
But now Ali has finally grabbed the attention of the media all on a sudden after the elite academy of NBA in India which will be launched in New Delhi next week, has selected him in its residential training programme.
Ali became the first player to get selected in the NBA elite academy. Due to poverty, Ali does not have a television set in his house. He roams around his friends' houses to watch NBA League matches.
On getting selected in NBA elite academy, Ali said: “I am truly excited to have got this rare opportunity. I have heard that NBA League is the best in the World. If I can perform well in the academy I will also be flown to NBA main academy in Florida."
Ali also informed he had watched videos of Michel Jordan, the legendary former Basketball player from USA.
Ali further added: “I have started liking slam dunk since I watched Jordan in the video for the first time in one of my friend's house. I also try to do this in the training."
Ali, who plays as a forward, is a big fan of basketball star Kevin Durant and he looks more excited after coming to know that the superstar is likely to come to NBA elite academy in New Delhi next December.
Ali said: “I am waiting for his arrival. Then, before shaking hands with him and taking his autograph I want technical advice from him, especially how to increase the speed with the ball."