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A panel of 21 referees, 24 assistant referees and 18 match commissioners were named by SAFA

The South African Football Association named their referees for the season, and more could be added if re-testing proves successful.

A flurry of new faces appears on the 2012/13 panel in the wake of the failure of several top refs to pass the mandatory fitness tests held in July. SAFA control the referees who will officiate in the top two tiers of the professional game in South Africa.

The all-important referees’ list includes 11 newcomers, several of whom are expected to officiate at Premier Soccer League games although they usually begin with National First Division games.

More could still be added with re-testing of some of those officials, who failed the initial fitness tests two months ago.

Two of the country’s five FIFA affiliated referees – the highest status that can be accorded – are among those who must retake their tests.

If they are to retain their FIFA badges, Victor Hlungwani and Daniel Volgraaff must also travel to Tanzania next weekend to repeat their tests.

But because they failed the first time in Johannesburg in July, they will now have to pay their own way. A trip to Dar es Salaam will cost each official thousands out of his own pocket.

Cape Town school teacher Jerome Damon, who officiated in the last World Cup, but lost his FIFA credentials because of injury, is again injured with hamstring problems.

He has decided to put his ambitions on hold and work on restoring his fitness. It means he is unavailable for local assignments until at least the New Year.

“Jerome is still only 40 so he still has time to get back on the panel,” said SAFA director of refereeing Adiel Carelse.

South Africa has five FIFA referees – the others are Daniel Bennett, Victor Gomes, Wandile Mfiki – and seven linesmen on the international panel.

Lindikhaya Bolo, Sandile Dilikane, Enock Molefe, Johannes Moshidi and Zakhele Siwela are all set for another year on the world panel but Luyanda Somi was kicked out for disciplinary reasons earlier this year. Andrew Reezers is also headed to Tanzania to do his tests.

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