By: Foday Manneh
Under a scorching heat of 37 degrees recorded at the game, Bombada FC hosted Kuteh Jumbul at the Brikama Box-bar mini stadium in week 5 of the Gambia Football Federation (GFF) League Division Two on Saturday, January 28, 2023.
This heat record did not prevent the game from proceeding; however, manifestations from players during the match, who frequently demanded water to either sip or cool their heads and shoes, while some requested to be replaced before the interval, were proven evidence of the high tempo.
“Yes, our player, Lamin Sambou, demanded substitution because of the heat. He complains of a headache and is a significant player for us, but what can we do? But, of course, his health comes first,” Bombada FC assistant head coach Mafugi Bojand told Alkamba Times Sports.
“We used to play on hours like this, but today was very hot. Even myself on the sideline needed a water break, much more of those playing, but that was left to the officials,” Bojang added.
The game ended with the referees not considering the water break, which worried fans from both sides.
“Is there no water break?” a fan was overheard asking. “There should be a water break looking at the heat here, and we expect that. These people are human beings.”
Kuteh, who traveled as far as Basse, in the Upper River Region, for their first-ever outing to the Greater Banjul Area in their maiden league appearance, was an experience to forget, adding to the 2-0 defeat to Bombada.
Kuteh’s Head Coach, Ebrima Manneh, said, “I was surprised when the referee said there is no water break because, in a situation like today, there should have been a water break.”
“We came from afar. Unfortunately, we reached here around 1 to 2 pm without enough relaxation, and playing under this heat, really affected us, but we can take excuse,” coach Ebrima maintains.
When approached after the game by TAT, match officials declined to comment on the matter.