A Second Division match between Digodi and Atlantic Swallows turned into a fist affair as the referee was assaulted.
Digodi players took the law into their own hands and beat up the referee when Swallows scored their second goal.
League Chairman Charles Chilisa became the match commissioner, after the originally assigned one came late.
“When Swallows increased the goals to two, Digodi supporters got on to the pitch and, together with Digodi players, beat the referee,” said Chilisa.
He stated that, before the game could start, somebody who he believe was from the Digodi team went in the field and started pouring ash-like stuff, a behavior which Chilisa says he warned their manager about because it is not allowed.
Chilisa says the referee ran around on the pitch while supporters threw stones and bottles at him and he was rescued by a certain Digodi official and Mokgosi football club supporters who came to watch the game.
Chilisa also indicated that, in another incident at the match, Digodi bench (substitutes) also pulled the lines woman (third referee) off the line with the intention to beat her but she escaped and hid behind a tree.
“The supporters’ fury was calmed down by the police who had been called and that is also how we found our way out,” said Chilisa, adding that the referee was rushed to the hospital because he was bleeding from the mouth. Chilisa said that they are still waiting for the report from the referee and the match commissioner, which shall be taken to the league committee to be heard.
Although Chilisa said this does not stop the playoffs from being played this coming Saturday 14th, he stated that Digodi faces charges for beating up the referee.
He stated that they took the names of the players who beat up the referee and added that the team may be charged up to about P10 000 or points may be deducted and players may also be suspended.
Chilisa said this is the first incident in which a referee was beaten because the last incident involved a player threatening to beat up the referee and he was subsequently suspended.
On the other hand, Digodi football coach, Stranger Modise, pointed out that they have the names of people who came to destroy their game by beating the referee.
Modise said the referee invoked the emotions of the supporters by letting the Swallows striker use the hand to tap the ball into the net.
“We tried with our security to protect the referee but it was tough thou we had 10 security men,” said Modise, adding that he was not happy with the game because they needed the 3 points to qualify for the play-offs.
Now, he says, he is surprised to see a match being run by three different match commissioners.
He also said that a Standard 6 student was just called from nowhere to become the linesman.
Swallows coach, Matshidiso Moseki, said they are waiting to hear from the league committee but claimed to have seen the security going to change clothes so that they could beat the referee.