Continues to fly country’s flag high
Botswana’s reigning referee of the year Joshua Bondo continues to be a force to reckon with when it comes to making strides on the international space; making him the best local whistle blower in recent times.
Bondo, with his excellent officiating in local and continental games, has been rewarded with a spot in the list of 27 referees that have been selected to officiate at the 2019 AFCON finals that get underway in Egypt from June 21 to July 19.
He will be the centre referee in what promises to be a mouthwatering month of African football flair and talent.
He has been picked alongside one of the top referees in the continent such as Mahmoud Zakria El Banna of Egypt, Bamlak Tessema of Ethiopia and veteran Gambian whistle blower and CAF award winning Gassama Bakary Papa of Gambia just to mention a few.
The Sprinter, as Bondo is affectionately known, will not be officiating at the AFCON competition for the first time as in 2017 he made the history to be the first ever Botswana referee to officiate in the Orange Africa Cup of Nations (AFCON) finals hosted in Gabon.
He is currently in Morocco attending the Total 2019 AFCON workshop where referees are being drilled on the Video Assistant Referee (VAR) which will be used at the AFCON tournament for the very first time.
Moreover, as part of his rising success on the continental level the all-time energetic Bondo will take another crucial assignment when he officiates at the much anticipated Orange CAF champions’ league semifinal first leg between Wydad Casablanca of Morocco and South African giants Mamelodi Sundowns.
The local referee will be in a crucial tie that involves former two African giants alongside with assistant referees Arsenio Maringule of Mozambique and Souro Phatsoane of Lesotho with Bernard Camille from Seychelles completing the crew as the fourth official.
The game will be played next week Friday – April 26. Prior to this assignment Bondo officiated at the AFCON qualifying match between Ghana and Kenya on March 23 in Accra, Ghana.
He was assisted on the lines by two local rising assistant referees in Meshack Medupi and Moemedi Monakwane with Tshepho Gobagoba acting as the fourth official for the match.
Football analyst Bapati Mmotlenyane said for Bondo to be regularly assigned to big games by CAF is a demonstration that he is one of the best referees in Botswana and Africa at large.
“We are very happy for Bondo because he is wired for more success and he is aiming high. It will not come as a surprise for him to be in the next World Cup finals because he has been tried and tested on the big stage,” insisted Mmotlenyane.