October 09, 2017
Top Oceania and Vanuatu referee Nawen Hopkins will officiate in the 2017 Courts Inter District Championship (IDC) at Churchill Park in Lautoka.
Hopkins who recently officiated in the 2018 FIFA World Cup qualifiers will be part of the 9 referees and 17 assistant referees panel for the tournament.
Fiji Football Association’s Referees’ Director Rakesh Varman said Hopkins' inclusion is a boost as he is one of the outstanding referees in the region.
“We are happy to have Joel for the IDC. He is doing very well at the moment and he will be here as part of OFC’S Referees’ Exchange programme.”
“Like all referees, he will also be assessed and his performance will be monitored during the tournament. He availed himself at just one request and we are thankful to OFC for facilitating our request.”
Commenting about the referees’ panel for the tournament, Varman said that all referees have proven their worth to be selected.
“Referees were selected on the basis of consistency and those that performed well in the season have made it to the panel. Referees have also gone through a week long MA course in Suva and majority of those that will be officiating in the tournament attended this course.”
“There have been some changes made to the laws of the game and the referees have been briefed and trained on this. They must feel the atmosphere of the game and not rush in giving cards. Referees must recognize fouls and make full application of the changes in law.
“I am positive and have confidence in my all referees in the panel. While small errors may be acceptable, referring errors will not be tolerated. Refereeing is a tough job and we must take every mistake as a learning platform for the next match.”
“New changes to law will be applied. Spectators are requested to leave the game control to the referees and referees committee. We already have action against some referees and will expect high level of performance from referees,” he added.
Referees- Ashwin Raj (Labasa), Ajesh Prasad (Labasa), Phul Singh (Labasa), Avinesh Narayan (Ba), Dina Mani Mudaliar (Lautoka), Adriu Naisiroki (Ba), Anit Kumar (Rakiraki), Veer Singh (Rewa), Navneet Varman (Nasinu), John Tapure (Suva).
Assistant referees: Deepak Deo, Shivneel Karan, Jone Ravouvou, Deepak Raj, Navneel Karan, Rohitesh Naicker, Waisea Masi, Vinal Vinit, Vinal Chand, Eapi Deku, Monit Singh, Keshwan Goundar, Anesh Goundar, Inoke Diani, Kavitesh Behari.
By Reginald Chandar