PSL player in coke bust

2009-01-30 00:00

A MARITZBURG United player has tested positive for cocaine and has been charged by the Premier Soccer League (PSL), the club revealed yesterday.

Former Kaizer Chiefs midfield star Lucky Maselesele, who joined United from first division team FC AK at the beginning of the current season, failed a PSL compulsory drugs test that was conducted when Maritzburg United played Wits University in Johannesburg on November 12.

He faces an SA Football Association disciplinary hearing on a date which is still to be decided.

Maselesele has been suspended by the PSL and his club.

“Lucky has been suspended and charged by the league for failing a dope test,” United team manager Quintin Jettoo said yesterday.

“At present we are awaiting the outcome of the Safa disciplinary hearing, and we can’t take any action of our own until then. We can’t prejudge the player before he has had his hearing.

“Lucky failed a PSL compulsory drugs test that was held when we played against Wits University in Johannesburg. The substance he tested positive for was cocaine.”

United coach Gordon Igesund said drugs in soccer is a worldwide phenomenon.

“I think drugs in sport are a worldwide problem because the players are earning so much money and are in the spotlight and don’t get managed properly. You read about it in the newspapers about the top players snorting whatever they do,” he said.

“It’s certainly not an isolated incident, even here in South Africa. I’ve been involved in clubs that have got these types of players. And the only way to stop it is for players to get the right kind of advice at a young age.”

Igesund believes, but said he cannot be completely sure, that Maselesele’s was an isolated incident and not a team problem.

“As far as the team is concerned you never know — how do you know? If anyone said to me ‘your player is using drugs’, I’d say they were mad. At training Lucky was never late, he always gave his best, and I never suspected anything was wrong.

“I think every team in the league has got one or two naughty boys, and you have to try and manage that.”

Maselesele, a well-known player in South Africa, having played for Chiefs, AmaZulu and FC AK, had no past disciplinary fall-outs in club soccer until now.

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