Nigeria was robbed of the chance to win a medal at the last World Indoor championship in Sopot, Poland due to the team doctor’s poor understanding of the doping rules.
Women 400m runner, Regina George was a sure bet for a medal after she posted 51.04 seconds, the fastest time in the heats, but she was withdrawn by the AFN after it was learnt that the accompanying doctor has no history of her therapeutic use exemption (TUE).
George didn’t have any medical document stating her use of drugs for cases like asthma and other conditions.
“The doctor they took there failed to manage the George situation very well. She did not have any TUE document.
“The AFN was forced to withdraw the athlete to avoid any embarrassment in case of a dope test,” said an international athletics source.
Based on her timing the gold was George’s for the taking in the 400m and no doubt also she would have boost the chances of the 4x400m team, which made it to the final but placed sixth.
Efforts to reach AFN medical committee officials to comment on the issue proved abortive, but it was gathered that the federation is looking into the issue to prevent a re-occurrence with regards to future international events.
George had to sit and watch with regrets as Francena McCorory of the USA coasted home to win the race in 51.12 seconds, Jamaica’s Kaliese Spencer won the silver with 51.54 seconds, while Shaunae Miller was third with 52.06.
‘Coming here, I was hale and healthy, very strong and determined to do well in my individual event and help my teammates so that we could also medal in the relay. I will now focus on my dream of competing and hopefully winning medals at the Commonwealth Games,” said the athlete.