Injuries prompt Bhutia to ponder over his international career (Lead)

August 18th, 2011 - 8:56 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Aug 18 (IANS) Former India captain Bhaichung Bhutia is seriously considering ending his international career since he is not able to cope with recurring injuries. He dropped hints Thursday that he might even take a call on his future in the next couple of days.

The immediate provocation for Bhutia’s decision is his recurring calf muscle strain that will not allow him to go to England with the under-23 team to play three friendlies, including one against arch-rivals Pakistan.

Bhutia, who was dropped from the senior team, was among the 32 probables for the English tour.

Bhutia, who has 43 goals from 109 international caps, has been out of the playing eleven for the major part of India’s Asian Cup campaign in Qatar and new coach Armando Colaco has more or less made it clear that the former India captain does not fit in his scheme of things.

Though Bhutia Thursday joined the under-23 camp at the Tau Devi Lal Stadium in Gurgaon under coach Sukhwinder Singh, he admitted that he was still dogged by the niggles and it’s time he took a call on his future.

“I will take a call (whether to continue) in the next two-three days,” said Bhutia.

Bhutia, however, said that even if he is picked for the England tour, he would be available for the first two matches only as he would like to get back home to see his club Sikkim United play their Federation Cup qualifier against ONGC on the day (Sep 9) India play their last match in England against Scotland Under-21. The other two matches are against Pakistan (Sep 3) and England under-23 (Sep 6).

“I will come back by September 9, probably after the first two matches,” said Bhutia.

Bhutia also said that Colaco should be given more time.

“You cannot have someone for two or four months. Even though most of the boys in the team come from the same system, he will still need time,” he said.

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