HEARTS star Laryea Kingston last night claimed his family would have been in danger if he had not returned to Ghana to prove he was injured.
The midfielder is at the centre of a furious row after the Ghana FA told him to make the 8000- mile round trip so medics could check on his fitness ahead of last night's friendly against Tunisia.
Hearts didn't want him to travel, claiming the playmaker's recovery from a thigh injury could be harmed by the flight.
But Kingston, who has been out for five weeks, insisted he had to obey national team bosses because passionate fans in his homeland might have turned on him and his family had he not turned up to prove he was crocked.
He said: "Some people in Ghana think when we foreign-based players say we are injured it might not be true so I wanted to prove it to them.
"Some fans of the national team who are also very passionate could physically attack me or my family over this - that's why I'm here to prove to everyone I am injured.
"Last month when I was invited for the friendly against South Africa I pleaded with the Ghana FA to leave me out because I would have returned on a Friday when my club had a game on the Saturday.
"As the Ghana coach agreed to my request, when I continue missing matches without giving any proof some might think I am being a truant.
There is also a new national team coach for Ghana and if I don't make any effort for him to see he might also have a different view of me."
Kingston is well aware Jambos boss Csaba Laszlo is furious at the trip but hopes he will understand the situation. He said: "I'm not in Accra to play in the game but I'm here to prove to my country's FA I was not lying when I said I was injured.
"I am very sad this has come out as if I have defied the club and the coach I respect so much to be here. I will be on the plane tonight even before the game starts.
"I had very good intentions for the good of my club and it is the reason why I came. I want to make it clear I will not do anything tomar the good relationship I have with Mr Laszlo and the fans.
"I will call him soon and have a chat.
As he has coached in Africa I hope he will sympathise with me." Kingston hopes to be fit to make a first-team return in the next fortnight.
He said: "I thought I would be back quickly when I sustained the injury but it has taken a while.
"I was able to run last week but there is still a bit of pain. I'm just hoping I can start hitting the ball and get back in two weeks.
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