Kolokotoane dreams big after COSAFA spotlight
Top Lesotho female referee Mathabo Kolokotoane has her eyes on officiating a major continental competition after handling the final at the recent Hollywoodbets COSAFA Women’s Championship
The Mafeteng born referee dreams of emulating Puleng Mohomo and Souru Phatṧoane, who are the two Lesotho referees to have officiated at the CAF Africa Cup of Nations.
Kolokotoane admitted that she had goosebumps leading to the final in Gqeberha based on the rivalry between South Africa and Zambia, who had squared-off a month earlier in the semi-final of Wafcon in Morocco.
“It was a proud and exciting moment when I learnt of the appointment to officiate the final of the COSAFA Women’s Champions and of course, I had goosebumps leading to the match, but by God’s grace, I think I officiated the game very well.
“It caught me by surprise to be honest when I looked at the calibre of the assistant referees I was paired as they have officiated big tournaments like the Olympics and World Cup.
“That made me realise that is does not matter whether we come from a small country, but if we work hard and show the commitment, our efforts will always get recognition,” Kolokotoane reveals.
Kolokotoane stated that she received a lot of support from her colleagues during the tournament and it gave her the courage to do well in the final.
“My colleagues and coaches were amazing when they learnt of the appointment to officiate the final and that was the motivation for me to do well for my country,” the referee said.
“My target going forward is to officiate at the Africa Cup of Nations, go to the Olympics because I know it will be a stepping stone to officiate in FIFA tournaments such as the junior and female tournaments.
“For me getting to the Africa Cup of Nations would be a dream come true, but I know one has to work hard to get to that level,” she said.