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Brunei
Wednesday, February 1, 2023
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Wednesday, February 1, 2023
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    Brunei referees make history at AFC Cup match

    Fadhil Yunus

    Brunei Darussalam top referee Abdul Hakim bin Mohd Haidi made history after being appointed to officiate the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Cup group stage match between Athletic 220 and Eastern at the Hong Kong Stadium in Hong Kong on Saturday.

    Eastern grabbed a 1-0 win over Athletic 220 with Lee Ka Yiu scoring the only goal of the game in the 55th minute.

    Abdul Hakim’s compatriot Ali Faisal bin Rosli was also part of the officiating team as an assistant referee in the Group ‘J’ tie.

    Iran’s pair Heidari Payam and Farhad Moravveji completed the officiating team as the fourth official and assistant referee. The continental assignment in the AFC-sanctioned tournament marked a landmark occasion in the development of Brunei refereeing.

    Previously, Abdul Hakim took the role of fourth official in the match between Tainan City and Athletic 220 at the Tseung Kwan O Sports Ground. Similarly, Ali Faisal was also involved in the officiating setup in the same match as an assistant referee. The pair, both internationally certified by FIFA, has been entrusted by AFC to be on refereeing duty in the cup competition between June 23 – 29.

    Bruneians Abdul Hakim bin Mohd Haidi and Ali Faisal bin Rosli before the AFC Cup match. PHOTO: NFABD

    The Group ‘J’ matches will conclude tomorrow with Athletic 220 taking on Lee Man at the Tseung O Kwan Sports Ground while Eastern will play Tainan City at the Hong Kong Stadium.

    Abdul Hakim burst into the continental scene when he was selected as the fourth official in a Group ‘H’ match between Myanmar’s Shan United and the Philippines’ Kaya FC-Iloilo at the Thuwunna Stadium in Yangon, Myanmar in February 2020.

    The 31-year-old has also previously boasted experience in an official capacity in the international scene after occupying the position of fourth official in the Asean Football Federation (AFF) Suzuki Cup in Laos in 2018.

    Hong Kong are currently hosting centralised matches in the four-team group, which comprise Hong Kong Premier League sides Lee Man and Eastern as well as Tainan City and Athletic 220 from neighbouring leagues.

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