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Safa suspends match officials after Kaizer Chiefs penalty debacle

Jelly Chavani is surrounded by AmaZulu players and staff after the DStv Premiership match against Kaizer Chiefs. Picture: Sydney Mahlangu/BackpagePix

Jelly Chavani is surrounded by AmaZulu players and staff after the DStv Premiership match against Kaizer Chiefs. Picture: Sydney Mahlangu/BackpagePix

Published Oct 6, 2021

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Johannesburg - The South African Football Association (Safa) Referees Review Committee has suspended Jelly Chavani and Moeketsi Molelekoa after their decision to award Kaizer Chiefs a controversial penalty during their league match against AmaZulu on Saturday.

After taking an early lead from a pin-point Luvuyo Memela shot in the second half, Usuthu continued to dominate proceedings for the better part of the second stanza. But they were denied the three points after Chavani’s decision to award Chiefs a late penalty.

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Deep into stoppage time, Chiefs charged towards Usuthu’s box until a diagonal cross from Lebogang Manyama came off the shoulder of Tapelo Xoki. And after a while, including consultation with assistant Molelekoa, Chavani pointed to the spot.

Keagan Dolly then stepped up and salvaged a point for the beleaguered Amakhosi, a feat that likely saved the job of coach Stuart Baxter, who’s come under criticism in the early stages of the season as his side can’t seem to live up to lofty billing of their supporters.

According to a report by Soccer Laduma on Wednesday morning, the referees’ committee met to discuss the extent of Chavani and Molelekoa’s officiating. They decided to suspend the duo from officiating in any football matches for at least four weeks.

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Moreover, upon their return, they’ll only be eligible to officiate in the lower leagues - the DStv Diski Challenge and ABC Motsepe league - for the first two weeks.

The decision to freeze the duo is said to be done to show Safa’s stance against poor officiating.

@Mihlalibaleka

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