By Ben Efe
Grassroots athletics coach, Johnny Igboka said suspended world women 400m champion, Salwa Eid Naser has always had the natural ability to run faster, and she should be able to convince the World Athletics integrity unit why she missed out of competition dope tests.
Eid Naser who was discovered by coach Igboka in 2012 reasoned that there wasn’t any need for the young athlete to rely on dope to boost her chances. However, he said there could be an explanation by the Onitsha-born Eid Naser why she missed the tests.
She was one of the athletes who have been suspended by the AIU for missing whereabouts tests after the World Championships in Doha. The other athlete is Christian Coleman of the USA who won the men’s 100m.
“I have no reason to doubt Eid Naser’s ability. She is a natural-born runner and she is capable of achieving the 48.14 seconds she did in Doha without resorting to banned substances.
“It is rather her die-hard character that propelled her to running that world-leading time in Doha. When she was small she had this knack of not allowing any athlete who had beaten her previously to beat her twice.
“I strongly believe that was the case when she beat Shaunae Miller-Uibo in the 400m final. Miller-Uibo had beaten her in the Diamond League and Eid Naser wouldn’t want to be beaten a second time; that is just her mentality.
“I’m backing her to overcome the setback and compete at next year’s Tokoyo 2020 Olympics,” Igboka added.