From Positive to Negative COVID tests to a rescheduling of the match that was supposed to have been played in March as one of the last of the qualifiers for the 2022 Africa Cup of Nations slated to be hosted in Cameroon to the changing of venue to a neutral one, ended up being a spirit booster for Sierra Leoneans around the world courtesy of a lone Spot Kick by MLS Superstar Kei Kamara.
The encounter was a tight one as both sides brought their best to bear and seize the high ground to qualify their teams to the next edition of the Africa Cup of Nations, which will be held in Cameroon in 2022.
At the final whistle Sierra Leoneans around the world rapturously let out a bellow in unison as they jubilated over a victory that has been a long time coming.
Sierra Leone is a country that has had too much of its share of misfortunes in recent decades and this moment in history gave hope where there has always been despair and for the most part cynicism.
Children as well as grown ups took to the streets across the country in celebration as uploaded videos of the celebrations spread like wildfire across social media.
The President of the nation HE Rtd Julius Maada Bio through the State House Communications Unit put out an impromptu video address touting his contribution to Football and sports in general, attributing his leadership as being responsible for the country attaining the highest stage of accomplishment at the CAF AfCON Showcase reminding citizens that the last time he was leader of the Nation 25 years back the nation made it to the showcase and upon his return at the helm once again the Leone stars have qualified again to the next edition in Cameroon his excitement and exuberance was evident as he even delivered the address in the most widely accepted local dialect ‘Krio’.
Congratulatory messages from Sierra Leoneans around the world where posted on their statuses on Social Media to observe the moment and come together as a nation.
Veteran Sports Journalist, Canada based Daniel Oldfield pleaded with the President to seize the moment and use this victory and Sierra Leone’s now guaranteed participation at the next edition of the Africa Cup of Nations to unify the country echoing a Social Media post from myself with the Nelson Mandela quote; "Sport has the power to change the world. It has the power to inspire. ... Sport can create hope where once there was only despair. "
The victory comes in the wake of a recent Sierra Leone Football Association elections that saw a new President in the name of Thomas Daddy Brima elected after 7 rocky years of Isha Johansen at the helm.
The victory bodes well for the new administration as they hit the ground running with a significant and resounding victory that will now see them leading the nation to the Continent’s biggest sporting showcase.
Africa Sports Ventures Group
African Sports Monthly Magazine