There will be no centre referee or assistants from Zimbabwe when the African Cup of Nations takes place in Gabon from January 14 to February 5.
Zimbabwe has not had a referee at the African football tournament since 2008 when the now retired Kenny Marange officiated following in the footsteps of Felix Tangawarima and Brighton Mudzamiri who had the privilege of not only handling matches at the Nations Cup but also took charge of games at FIFA Confederations Cup, the Olympic Games, Euro Under-21 Championships and the World Cup respectively.
ZIFA Referees Committee vice-chairman and former CAF referee Gladmore Muzambi yesterday admitted that the absence of local officials on the bigger stage was cause for concern for the association and added that his committee is working hard on developing a new breed of referees by grooming young officials. He also said that it was important that Zimbabwean referees secure places on the CAF Elite A category in order for them to be picked for such tournaments like the Nations Cup.
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