Brunei Darussalam’s referee Abdul Hakim bin Mohd Haidi and assistant referee Mohammad Faisal Ali left the country yesterday to take part in the ASEAN Football Federation (AFF) Under-23 Championship in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, which begins on February 14.
The local referees, who are both certified internationally by football’s world governing body FIFA, have been assigned for officiating duties in the region’s premier competition for under-23 football.
The Cambodia assignment will mark the duo’s first participation in the regional and international scene together since the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Cup in June 2021.
The country’s top officials reached a new milestone in the advancement of refereeing after being entrusted by the AFC to undertake their respective tasks in the continental meet.
Abdul Hakim received his most significant appointment in his career yet after being appointed to officiate the Group ‘J’ match between Athletic 220 and Eastern at the Hong Kong Stadium.
Faisal Ali was also part of the refereeing team in the same match as the first assistant referee.
Abdul Hakim had previously served as the fourth official during the previous league clash between Tainan City FC and Athletic 220 with Faisal Ali executing his duties as the second assistant referee in the same match.
The AFC Cup, the second tier of Asian club competition, featured several teams from across Asia including Bahrain, Lebanon, Syria and Jordan.
Football Association of Brunei Darussalam (FABD) Executive Council member Pengiran Haji Aliudin bin Pengiran Haji Tajudin and Football Referees Association of Brunei Darussalam (PPBNBD) members bade farewell to the two officials at the Brunei International Airport yesterday.