BENGALURU: Ace woman footballer Bala Devi left the Indian shores in January 2020 after signing for Rangers FC in the Scottish Women’s Premier League.
That was also the last time the footballer spent time in her hometown in Manipur. Ever since then she has been in regular touch with her parents over the phone from the foreign nation.
The situation is much better in Scotland now, but it’s India, which has been reeling under the second wave of the pandemic currently.
The 31-year-old has been constantly asking her parents to stay indoors. More importantly, the Rangers no 10 is worried about her dad, who is a kidney patient.
“I speak to my parents around 10-11 pm Indian standard time. My father is a kidney patient. So he has to be taken care of. One cannot go to hospitals in the current situation. I have also asked them not to go out. However, it is a big relief that the situation in my village is not bad as it reported only a few cases. It is in Imphal (Manipur’s capital) that the cases are more,” Devi said in a media interaction on Friday.
The league was called off last season due to the pandemic but she didn’t let off-field situations impact her game much in Scotland. Earlier this month, Devi made the headlines after scoring a wonderful goal against Spartans FC.
A 30-yard strike found the back of the net as the ball sailed over the goalkeeper’s head and the video clip went viral on social media. With the league concluding on June 6, it remains to be seen if the final fixture against Glasgow City will be her last as a Rangers player. Devi’s 18-month contract, which was signed early last year, ends next month.
“I cannot tell you exactly about my future now. On June 6, the league is going to end. After that I will have discussions with Rangers,” said Devi, who is hopeful of an extension.
Her team currently lies second in the league. One may not be aware as to where her future lies, but one thing is for certain that her stint abroad will help India when she dons the national colors again.
Playing at a higher level, against quality players in Scotland should do a world of good.
“Whatever things I have learned and seen here, I am surely going to share the experience with my India teammates. The situation in Indian football has also improved a lot, from fitness to confidence, it has increased,” said Devi.