Former Sierra Leone coach accused of administering unsanctioned drug to players
Freetown – The former coach of Sierra Leone's National Female Under-20 team gave her players unsanctioned drugs ahead of their ignominious 10-0 defeat at the hands of Nigeria's Super Falconets in October, the Sierra Leone Football Association has said.
Hannah Williams was sacked following the Abuja encounter that dealt a serious blow to the team's chances of qualifying for the 2014 Fifa Women Under-20 World Cup in Canada.
The SLFA in a statement said the decision was reached by the Executive Committee as a result of Coach Williams failing "to provide technical leadership".
On Friday, John Konteh, head of Communications at SLFA, told Africa Review that further investigations had revealed that Williams had administered drugs to the girls.
“…besides her failure to provide technical leadership in the away leg of the National U-20 Championship against the Nigerian U-20 on Saturday 28th October where the team lost 10 – 0, Coach Williams administered certain medication to the entire squad which rendered them ineffective to match their Nigerian counterparts,” a statement by the SLFA said.
The drug, Eurycoma longifolia – commonly known as Tongkat Ali, is said to be primarily used to increase the flow of blood to and from the heart, and also excites the user sexually.
Williams reportedly admitted administering the drug to almost every player on the team without the knowledge of the team's doctor and other delegation members.
She claimed she intended to enhance their performance.
The SLFA said testimonies of other members of the delegation showed the drug had a reverse effect as the players appeared weak resulting from unusual menstruations and diarrhoea, condemning her action as “gross manifestation of misconduct, thus putting the lives of the players at risk and jeopardizing the integrity and trust of the nation.”
Sources within the SLFA say they are considering possible action against Williams.
The Nigeria U-20 team on Saturday beat Sierra Leone 6-0 in the return leg to win 16-0 on aggregate and will face either Morocco or Tunisia in December.