Promising India defender Anwar Ali has been asked to stop training as his latest medical reports are being sent to the Asian Football Confederation, months after being diagnosed with a congenital heart condition, which has put a question mark on his career.
One of the impressive performers of the 2017 U-17 World Cup at home, Anwar underwent blood tests, a CT scan and an MRI at a top private hospital in Kolkata last week, the reports of which had been sent to the All India Football Federation’s (AIFF) medical committee.
“His reports have been sent to the AFC and till a final decision is taken, he has been asked to stop practice. A decision on his future in football should come by this weekend,” I-League chief executive officer Sunando Dhar told PTI.
He categorically stated that a decision has not been arrived at so far but an AIFF source the reports of Anwar’s latest tests are “probably not good enough” to allow him to play competitive football.
The centre-back’s career has been left hanging in the balance ever since he was diagnosed with a congenital heart condition last year.
The diagnosis eventually led to the termination of his contract with ISL franchise, Mumbai City FC, following consultations with top doctors in France and Mumbai.
Anwar has been a part of AIFF’s developmental side Arrows after his promising beginning at the Minerva Punjab academy in Panchkula.
Anwar was one of the top performers in the World Cup, which India hosted, and was immediately seen as one for the future.
Impressed with his skills, national coach Igor Stimac summoned him for a camp, but he soon found himself out of action after three cardiologists said a career in football for him involves too much risk.
However, not the one to give up, he started training at his native in Adampur near Jalandhar, and landed a contract with Mohammedan Sporting FC for the upcoming second division I-league, now the third tier in the Indian football structure.
His new club secretary Bilal Ahmed Khan was with him as Anwar underwent the tests last week.
AIFF general secretary Kushal Das said the federation would love to have player of the calibre of Anwar in its ranks, but not at the cost of his life.
“Several tests have been done on him, he was sent to Spain to get a specific test done. And at the Nanavati hospital (in Mumbai) also, he was checked,” Das told PTI.
“We are praying that he is fine, he is one of the most talented players we have, but we cannot take risks, cannot put any player at risk,” he added.