Burundi’s Cynthia Ishimwe made history by becoming the first woman to referee a Beach Soccer Africa Cup of Nations match.
Ishimwe was part of the referee team for the Beach Soccer Mozambique 2022 Africa Cup of Nations between Senegal and Madagascar in Vilankulo on Monday, October 24, 2022.
Ishimwe’s rise is not accidental. Over the past 18 months, CAF has accelerated its programs to promote women referees in Africa.
“We are all proud of what Cynthia has achieved. It is a big step in the right direction. It is an important moment because it not only opens doors for other women referees in Beach Soccer in Africa, but it also sets the trend globally.”, said CAF head of refereeing and football technology, Noumandiez Doue.
For Ishimwe, CAF support and programs have prepared her for this moment.
“When I learned that I was going to officiate at the AFCON Beach Soccer, I could not hide my enthusiasm. It is an immense privilege to be chosen for the final phase of an African Cup of Nations. And this adventure has been nothing but enriching. In addition, I am surrounded by experienced referees who do not hesitate to share their knowledge. They push me to improve and give the best of myself. I feel totally integrated and the atmosphere is very good within the group.” she also said.
Three intense clashes are expected this Wednesday. These are Malawi vs Uganda (12:30), Morocco vs Egypt (14:00) and Senegal vs Mozambique, the hosts at 15:30 GMT+2.