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Uzbekistan referee Ravshan Irmatov sets World Cup record

Uzbekistan referee Ravshan Irmatov sets World Cup record


The highly decorated Asian referee took charge of his ninth World Cup match, breaking the 20-year-old record set by Joel Quiniou of France

Four-time Asian Football Confederation (AFC) Referee of the Year winner Ravshan Irmatov set a milestone in the Netherlands v Costa Rica game, becoming the first referee to officiate nine World Cup matches.

Irmatov handled the last quarter-final tie in Brazil, his fourth at the competition after overseeing three Group Stage matches, namely, Switzerland vs Ecuador, Croatia vs Mexico and United States vs Germany.

The Uzbek has been a Fifa international official since 2003 and made his World Cup debut in 2010 where he also set a few tournament records.

Taking charge of five matches in South Africa, he equalled the record for most number of matches officiated in a single World Cup, when he was selected for the Netherlands - Uruguay semi-finals.

At 32 years of age, he was also the tournament's youngest referee that year.

The previous record for most number of World Cup matches overseen by a referee was held by three individuals.

Joël Quiniou of France first set the record in 1994, before both Benito Archundia of Mexico and Jorge Larrionda of Uruguay equalled it in 2010.