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Tolgay’s return may be delayed

Tolgay

Calcutta: Mohun Bagan’s injured striker Tolgay Ozebe had a “successful” knee operation in Sydney. “He had a successful operation. We are hopeful of his return in the next five to six weeks. We got in touch with him on Saturday. We are confident that he will be back by the end of this year,” club secretary Anjan Mitra said on Saturday.

For the record, the 26-year-old striker flew back to Australia for a surgery on his injured knee, keeping almost everyone in the dark.

Tolgay’s delayed return means Bagan will have to do without him in crucial I-League encounters against Salgaocar SC (at home on November 17), reigning champions Dempo (Nov. 28 in Margao), Pune FC (Dec. 2 in Pune) and arch-rivals East Bengal (on December 9). He will also miss matches against Pailan Arrows (Dec. 15), United Sikkim Football Club (Dec. 23) and Churchill Brothers (Dec. 29).

However, one source, revealed that Bagan may not get Tolgay before February 2013.

“He (Tolgay) had already survived a similar kind of injury before. Normally, the intensity of these injuries is such that it takes a minimum of six weeks to recover. Now, even if Tolgay has a good rehab programme, it may well take him another couple of weeks or so to be match fitů So it will not be possible for him to be match-fit before February 2013.”

Tolgay, who caught the imagination of the fans during his two-year stay with East Bengal, decided to switch allegiance before the 2012-13 season. However, his transfer was not smooth and he had to cough up a hefty fine to both IFA and the red-and-gold brigade.