Saturday, June 22, 2024
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SA Ref Flying Flag High In Europe

FIFA accredited referee Akhona Makalima continues to fly the South African flag high, and is one just two African referees currently in France for the U23 Maurice Revello Tournament, formerly known as the Toulon Tournament.

Makalima has been part of the FIFA refereeing panel since 2014, which means she gets to officiate for FIFA, the Premier Soccer League, the SAFA Women’s League, the South African Football Association (SAFA) and the Confederation of African Football (CAF).

She, and her Namibian compatriot Twanyanyukwa Antsino are the only two female African officials hailing from the continent currently out there doing duty in France.

Makalima also did duty at the recent Africa Cup of Nations in Ivory Coast alongside Abongile Tom and Zakhele Siwela.

The 36-year-old was in charge of Ukraine’s match against Indonesia last week which ended 3-0 in favour of the former. The war-torn country has continued to use sports as a platform to inspire and voice out global concerns. Real Madrid’s Andriy Lunin won the LALIGA title and UEFA Champions League, while Oleksandr Usyk recently won the WBA, WBO, WBC and IBF Unified titles.

Makalima holds a national diploma in Human Resource Management obtained from King Hintsa FET College.

One of her biggest highlights to date was being elected by FIFA to the officiating pool for the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Australia.

The Tournament is expected to run until June 16, with 10 nations taking part. Ivory Coast is the only African side partaking, and currently top Group A with nine points having won all their three matches.

Sinethemba Makonco
Sinethemba Makonco
Sinethemba Makonco is one of South Africa's brightest up-and-coming football journalists. Makonco shot to prominence on social media as a reliable source for South African football news and transfer stories, and is currently working as a junior journalist at iDiski Times.