Nine class one referees fail fitness test
NINE Class One referees from the Southern Region and one from the Northern Region failed fitness tests conducted in Bulawayo and Harare last weekend.
Prominent among them is Mlindeli Ndebele, who could not make it through the rigorous physical examination for the second time this year. Ndebele was the only casualty in the April test.
Zimbabwe Referees Committee vice-chairman Gladmore Muzambi said 85 referees from the Southern Region were taken through their paces by Morris Banda at the National University of Science and Technology (Nust), while the Northern Region tested 76 referees at the National Sports Stadium B Arena.
“In Harare only one referee, Pets Napwaro from Marondera in Mashonaland East failed to complete the test, while one referee did not take part on a doctor’s advice. Nine fell by the wayside in Bulawayo with one being advised by doctors not to take part,” said Muzambi.
With the weekend’s tests being the last for this year, referees that failed now have to wait for another go in 2017 and will, in the meantime, not officiate in any official matches, according to the rules.
“For Class Ones yes, it’s the end. Lower classes are doing their tests this weekend in the 10 provinces and that will mark the end of the year’s tests,” said Muzambi, whose committee is chaired by Zifa president Philip Chiyangwa and also has Kainos Mavhuna, Japhet Mufiri, Thabani Mkantjo and Musa Ntonga.
For the weekend tests, referees were asked to pay $20 compared to $140 they were being charged before the new committee took office. “It’s clear now that we were being robbed and some of us are even considering seeking legal advice to see whether we can demand to know how our money was used,” said a referee, who spoke on condition of anonymity. Referees that failed fitness tests: Southern Region: Nkululeko Mpofu, Pardon Mutero, Mandlenkosi Sibanda, Victor Ndebele, Sambulo Dube, James Harirari, Mlindeli Ndebele, Rugare Kusosa, Praise Mkwevo
Northern Region: Pets Napwaro