After having a wonder winter football season last year by winning the Chatham Cup with Napier City Rovers, Solomon Islands international Andrew Abba had a difficult 2019-20 ISPS Handa Premiership season as the Waitakere United’s forward got injured in a match against Hamilton Wanderers in December and missed the rest of the season.
He underwent surgery one month after getting injured to repair his knee and begin his rehab – “Surgery went well, and rehab has also been coming along well too. The good thing is that the lockdown gave me more time to rehab and not miss the winter season,” explained Abba.
In fact the lockdown due to COVID-19 really helped him once the ISPS Handa Premiership season was called off and winter football season kick-off was postponed from April to June. The 30-year-old forward also confessed that he spent some time thinking about retire from football due to this injury.
It has been almost five months since Abba underwent surgery but his knee is not fully recovered from the severe injury yet. However he is working hard to stay fit – “I was gaining a bit of weight during the lockdown as I could not train or go for runs. Once we moved to lockdown’s level 3 and I was able to start running I could focus on losing weight quickly,” he said.
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He was in talks to join Forrest Hill Milford for the winter football season before getting injured last December. At this moment he is still some steps away from playing a full match. Despite the caution he keeps his optimism about returning to football – “Being fully recovered on next month is my goal […] I need to work a little more on my knee and fitness,” he pointed.
Playing in New Zealand for over a decade, Abba also dreams about returning to Solomon Islands National Football Team – “If they are interested I will be available,” he stated. The next international challenge of Solomon Islands is not scheduled yet once 2020 OFC Nations Cup was cancelled.
Recovering from injury is much more than rest and then exercise. An athlete must have the desire to get well soon otherwise the psychological health goes away. Andrew is being a true warrior fighting day in day out to do what he loves: playing football.