Thursday, 25 October 2018


FIVE referees have been sidelined for the rest of the season after they failed the last fitness test of the year held at Hillside Teachers’ College in Bulawayo on Sunday, a development that has incensed the referees’ committee leadership.

Major Mususa and Freddy Nyoni from the Midlands, Bornface Siduli from Matabeleland North, Nkululeko Mpofu from Bulawayo and Lysias Dika from Masvingo could not go the distance and will now have to return to the field after a rigorous testing before the season starts next year.

“This was the last fitness test for this season and we do not expect any serious referee to fail fitness at this time of the season since they must be at their peak form.

“We do not want referees who train for fitness tests, they should train for officiating and those who follow our training programmes pass with ease,” fumed Zimbabwe Referees’ Committee vice-chairman Gladmore Muzambi, who supervised the physical course. Muzambi said it was prudent for referees to take the profession seriously as they continue with their bid to raise the standard of officiating to world class levels.

There were 80 referees and 40 commissioners that took part in the weekend course.
Zimbabwe recently made a request to the Fifa referees’ committee to increase the number of Zimbabwean referees on the Fifa international list to 17 with emphasis on young and up-and-coming officials, but that thrust might hit a brick wall if the same officials fail end of year fitness tests, which might also not be as rigorous as the Fifa syllabus.

Addressing the referees on Saturday, Zifa vice-president Omega Sibanda discouraged them from taking part in social league games which he said turn out to have a negative impact on their performance. Chronicle


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