Zifa appeal dead: Namibia

HARARE - The Namibia Football Association (NFA) insists the appeal by the Zimbabwe Football Association (Zifa) to have a Chan replay between the Warriors and the Brave Warriors is dead in the water.

Zimbabwe were eliminated from the competition when they lost the second round qualifier 5-4 on penalties after the ties had finished 1-1 on aggregate at the National Sports Stadium last month.

However, Zifa had written to the Confederation of African Football protesting over the Namibians’ third spot kick taken by midfielder Dynamo Fredricks.

The Brave Warriors midfielder feinted after completing his run before sending his spot kick past Warriors goalkeeper Herbert Rusawo.

It is an offence to feint once you have completed your run up when taking a penalty according the Laws of the Game.

Caf reacted by suspending the Swaziland match officials Thulani Sibandze and Petros Mbingo, who were at fault for allowing Fredricks’ penalty to stand.

The suspension of these officials had given Zifa hope but Caf is unlikely to grant the replay according to NFA secretary-general Barry Rukoro.

Namibia are tomorrow scheduled to take on the Comoros in the final qualifying round first leg.

“I don’t think it (Zifa appeal) will come to anything, because of the procedures and the time limit to file a complaint,” Rukoro told the Namibian newspaper yesterday.

“The rules are clear - the referee’s decision is final. If it is later discovered that there was a wrong decision by the referee, Caf will only penalise the referee.

“Until Monday we had received communication from Caf as normal. I think Caf thinks its immaterial, not because it is factually wrong, but because of the time factor.”

Rukoro said Namibia received a written complaint from Zifa in the changing room after the match, with the Brave Warriors captain Ronald Ketjijere having signed it off, but he said Zifa had not done anything since then.

“I read about their appeal on August 6, so it’s been portrayed that the appeal was made then. You have 48 hours to lodge an appeal while you must also pay a fee of $2 000 to Caf,” he said.

“When you make a complaint, the match commissioner will take the letter and file it to Caf, but the party that appeals must still make a presentation to Caf and pay the fee before the case can be officially registered.

“Zifa have a new executive committee and I think they might not have taken note of this. Caf are still communicating with us and I think this protest will come to nothing.”

In the protest letter sent to Caf at the weekend, Zifa’s new chief executive officer Joseph Mamutse said: “...after a thorough review of the controversial incident in which a ghost goal was scored during the penalty shoot-out, hereby advises Caf of its official appeal to have that effort declared null and void because of a technical error.”

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