New Era (Windhoek)

Africa: Shikongo Gets Whistle for Top CAF Clash

Windhoek — Namibia's leading whistle man, Reinhold Shilongo, has been given the mandate to officiate in this weekend's eagerly awaited Confederation of African Football (CAF) Cup play-off clash between giant-killers Black Leopards of South Africa and Al Merreikh of Sudan on Saturday.

Recently crowned MTC Premiership Referee of the Season, Reinhold Shikongo, leads the four member Namibian delegation that also includes the 2011/212 season's MTC Premiership Assistant Referee of the Season David Shaanika, Helmut Andreas and Simson Shahungu.

The quartet leaves for South Africa tomorrow and returns home on Sunday. Shaanika says they are looking forward to the challenge. "CAF have the confidence in us to officiate in these big games and we have to return that compliment by being at our usual best throughout the match," he quipped in an interview this week.

The international encounter between Leopards and Al Merreikh was initially scheduled for the Dobsonville Stadium in Soweto, but Leopards requested that the match be moved to the Ellis Park Stadium for logistical reasons. The South Africans came from three goals down to reduce the deficit to 3-2 against the Sudanese giants in the first leg of the quarterfinals a fortnight ago.

Having already overcome a two-goal first-leg deficit against the Warri Wolves of Nigeria in the previous qualifying round, Leopards will be hopeful to repeat the same feat in front of their supporters this time around.

The Premier Soccer League (PSL) campaigners just avoided relegation on the last day of league activities in the PSL last season and have so far exceeded all expectations in their continental debut with wins over Motor Action of Zimbabwe, Lupopo of the Democratic Republic of Congo and Wolves.

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