Grace Chingoma Senior Sports Reporter
LOCAL referee Norman Matemera’s stock continues to rise with more Confederation of African Football assignments coming his way.
The Zimbabwe Republic Police officer will handle his third match this month when he takes charge of CAF Confederation Cup play-off match in Rwanda later this month.
Matemera will be assisted by Thomas Kusosa and Luckson Mhara when they officiate the match between Rayon Sports and Nigerian Rivers United in Kigali.
Previously, the referee was the fourth official in the Champions League tie between Zambian giants Zanaco and Rwanda’s APR in Lusaka.
Matemera also handled the Confederation match between Zesco United of Zambia and Burundi’s Le Messager FC de Ngozi in Zambia.
The Harare referee has not looked back since he began officiating at COSAFA matches and lately he has been getting CAF recognition.
In the upcoming tie which has been postponed to April 22 to allow the smooth observation of the Rwanda genocide memorial days, the Harare referee would be assisted by Kusosa and Mhara.
At the moment the country has a panel of three centre referees which also includes Nomore Musundire and Philani Ncube. There are also six assistants’ referees on the CAF/FIFA panel.
Yesterday, ZIFA Referees’ Committee vice-chairperson Gladmore Muzambi said the recognition of local match officials by CAF augurs well for the domestic game.
“We always cherish the recognition of our referees at these international games as it showcases the standards of refereeing in Zimbabwe,” said Muzambi.
Turning to the new Castle Lager Premiership season, Muzambi said they were also expecting a good term from the match officials.
“Having witnessed the start of the season at the weekend, I can say we are geared up for the performance that is high. “We took the referees through a season opening refresher course to equip them with necessary skills to officiate in 2017.