March 11, 2019
By Sahr Morris Jnr
President of the National Olympic Committee of Sierra Leone (NOC-SLE), Dr. Patrick Coker, has called on Sierra Leonean athletes and Associations to start winning medals at major international games.
Sierra Leone is yet to secure a single medal in the entire Commonwealth and Olympic Games the country has participated in, and now the NOC-SLE gaffer wants to see the country’s athletes start going for the push and secure medals.
“It has been a long time we’ve been participating in international games without winning medals. It is about time we started winning and prove we can do it,” Dr. Coker said at the unveiling ceremony of the Sierra Leone Boxing Association newly decorated and upgraded gym at the Siaka Stevens Stadium in Freetown.
He also advised the association executive and athletes that, with the support from the African Elite Athletes and the ongoing international training from Cuban, coaches must be treated with utmost seriousness, adding that the project should not just be a white elephant program.
Team Sierra Leone last outing in a major game was the 2018 Commonwealth Games in Australia, where the Beach Volleyball male team and wrestlers came close to secure bronze medals.
The Sierra Leone beach volleyball pair; Patrick Lombi and Abu Bakarr Kamara’s medals hopes were shattered by Australia duo, Schumar and McHugh, who advanced in the quarter-finals with a two straight defeat 21-12, 21-14.
However, over the years the NOC-SLE president has received several medals from other African competitions.
In 2016, Sierra Leone’s Mattu Kamara secured a silver medal in female double, while Amza Kabba and Joseph S Kamara also won silver in their double at the International Tennis Federation (ITF) and Confederation of Africa Tennis (CAT), Central and West Africa championship in Abuja, Nigeria.
Also in 2017, Sierra Leonean athletes, who competed in the West Africa Region II Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Senior and Junior Championships in Conakry, Guinea, secured 18 medals at the championship and the same year, Sierra Leone wrestling national team won silver and bronze medals at the African Championship.