Muti headache for First Division officials

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First Division South League secretary, Sydney Magagane says it is difficult to control the use of muti in football matches, which is rampant. Over the weekend, some players and supporters were seen sprinkling unidentified liquids on the pitch before kick-off of the Mogoditshane Fighters and Lesirane game at Fighters ground on Saturday.

A supporter handed a Fighters’ player a bottle with a brown liquid and the player proceeded to pour the substance around his goalpost. In return, a Lesirane supporter jumped onto the field to snatch the bottle with the match in progress.  Not to be outdone, he also threw some sticks into the field.  Fighters won the duel 2-1.

Magagane told Mmegi Sport it was difficult to control such behaviour, which is common among teams.  He said the ‘rituals’ take place before the match and at half time.

Referees committee chairperson, Lesego Leakeaketsa said most teams widely believe in the use of muti, in a move meant to strike fear in their opponents.

 He said there is no law that deals with the practice. Leakeaketsa said despite that, spraying water and throwing other substances onto the field of play is misconduct.

“It is a concern but the challenge is that there is no law that deals with the practice and it is only when it is introduced that action can be taken against the perpetrators. You cannot take action against someone when you have no backing of the constitution,” he said.

Leakeaketsa said until a law is introduced and there is evidence that some individuals are involved in the practice, as match officials their hands are tied. He said referees could only advice individuals to stop the practice.

Meanwhile, log leaders, Black Forest continued their good run on Saturday when they beat Black Rangers 3-0 in Tsabong. Forest are at the top with 19 points.

A point separates Forest and Rolling Boys who are in second spot with 18 points. Boys climbed to second after beating Uniao Flamengo Santos 2-1. Fighters are now third after beating Lesirane 2-1.

Fighters have accumulated 14 points from nine matches. In other matches, Notwane drew 0-0 against Letlapeng while Sharps Electrical beat struggling Prisons XI 1-0. League debutants, Mochudi Rovers recorded a 1-0 victory over Modipane United.

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