India defender Mahesh Gawli announced his international retirement on Monday, informing the All India Football Federation (AIFF) of his decision in a letter.
Gawli represented India in 82 matches, his last being the Saff Championship final which the hosts won earlier this month. "It is delightful and so appropriate to have a perfect farewell to my international career on winning the Saff Championship," Gawli said. A Dempo player for the past six years, Gawli added that he plans to continue to play club football for 'some more years'.Asked to pick his most memorable moments, Gawli said: "The triumph in the AFC Challenge Cup (2008) has to stay on the top of the list. The 2011 Asian Cup is something which I will remember forever".
Gawli has been a pillar of strength in the Indian backline for a long time and picked United SC's Arnab Mondal as one of the players to look out for.