No football for 10 years for ref assault player
THE Zifa Southern Region disciplinary committee has slapped Victoria Falls Tigers’ defender Lethukuthula Mathe with a 10-year football ban for assaulting a referee in a Division One League match last month.
Mathe (31) will, however, serve half the sentence after the committee suspended five years on condition he does not commit a similar offence should he return to action after serving his punishment.
The Victoria Falls Tigers defender, who escaped a life ban from all football activities, assaulted referee Bekezela Makeka during his team’s 0-1 loss to Amagagasi in Victoria Falls.
Mathe went berserk and punched Makeka several times for showing him a red card for a crude tackle on an Amagagasi player. The attack was captured on video and trended on social media platforms, with some continental television stations even broadcasting the clip.
Musa Mandaza, Zifa Southern Region chairman, said Mathe’s punishment serves as a warning to would-be offenders that the league does not condone violent behaviour.
“Mathe has been suspended from all football related activities and we hope that he will reform. Would-be offenders should know that we don’t tolerate any behaviour that brings the game of football into disrepute. We can’t tolerate uncouth behaviour in our league and what I witnessed during that Victoria Falls derby between Amagagasi and Victoria Falls Tigers was uncalled for,” said Mandaza.
The league’s disciplinary committee also slapped 34-year-old Technosphere striker Artwell Nyoni with a 12-month suspension and ordered him to pay a $100 fine before the end of December.
Nyoni’s team manager Mthenjwa Moyo was hit with a 10-match suspension and fined $200 after being found guilty of violently charging at referee Mhaka Magare during Technosphere’s 0-1 loss to Amagagasi last month.
The suspensions came into effect during the midweek game played on Wednesday.
Without Nyoni, Technosphere were held to a 1-1 draw by Indlovu Iyanyathela, while Tigers were walked over after failing to travel for the away encounter against championship chasing Bulawayo Chiefs.
Chiefs were given three points on a 3-0 score line, taking their points tally to 50, one behind leaders Bantu Rovers, who were held 0-0 by Ntabazinduna.
Third-placed Amagagasi, who have amassed 49 points, beat visiting Casmyn 2-1 in Victoria Falls.
Meanwhile, the championship race continues with Rovers facing Technosphere at Luveve Stadium tomorrow, while Chiefs face tricky Makomo in Hwange on Sunday.
Zifa Southern Region moved the Makomo Chiefs game to Sunday at Makomo’s request, as they’re having their sixth-year anniversary at the Colliery Stadium tonight.