Caf give Eswatini green light to host Afcon qualifier

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South Africa will no longer play host to the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations qualifier between Eswatini and Guinea Bissau after Caf lifted the ban on Mavuso Sports Centre hosting international matches.

Caf had announced the ban on the venue last month citing poor pitch conditions.

In a statement, the EFA announced that “The Total Afcon Qualifier match between Eswatini and Guinea Bissau will be played at the Mavuso Sports Centre on Friday, 26th March 2021. Kick-off is at 1500hrs (CAT),”

“Eswatini Football Association (EFA) would like to inform her stakeholders that the Confederations of Africa Football (CAF) at an Emergency Committee of the 8th of March 2021 decided to lift the ban on hosting of the AFCON 2021 qualifiers match between Eswatini and Guinea Bissau.

“This is, however, an exclusive relaxation, restricted to only the match in question, scheduled for Friday the 26 of March 2021 at 15:00. It is therefore expected, as per the original prohibition by Caf that after this match the venue will remain banned until the necessary corrections have been addressed in conformity with the Caf Stadiums Requirements.

“EFA has greatly welcomed the decision of the Caf Emergency Committee, which comes as a substantial relief on the technical, fiscal and logistical requirements and convenience of hosting matches of an international breadth.

“Accordingly, EFA and as expected, as host, has commenced the logistical preparations for the hosting of the match in question, with organizational hosting requirements for the match and the requisite International Match Protocol (IMP) for hosting of international matches during the Covid-19 environment.

“The match officials, as designated by CAF for the match are as follows: Jean Claude Ishimwe (referee- Rwanda), Ambroise Hakizimana (assistant referee 1 – Rwanda), Raymond Nonati Bwiliza (assistant referee 2 – Rwanda), Ruzindana Nsoro (fourth official – Rwanda), Simphiwe Brian Xaba (match commissioner – South Africa), Abdul Basit Ebrahim (referee assessor – South Africa) and Nomsa Bongie Dlamini (Covid-19 Officer,” read the statement.

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By Ofhani Munyai

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