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FIFA MA Refereeing Course gets underway

“I want to welcome the FIFA RAP Instructors Mark Hester and Mike Hester (no relation) for coming here to conduct this course,” said FFAS executive member, Rev. Ioane Evagelia, “and I officially declare this course open on behalf of our president, Faiivae Iuli Alex Godinet.”
“This course is going to be a good one and I’m sure you are going to learn a lot from it,” explained Mark Hester, conducting his fourth MA course locally. “But to learn as much from it as you can, it requires your participation.”
Instructing for the first time in American Samoa is former New Zealand Football referee Mike Hester. Hester became the first New Zealander to referee a FIFA World Cup match, doing so at the South Africa finals in 2010 before retiring in 2011.
With his vast experience as a former FIFA referee, local whistle blowers have five days to pick his brain.
“We are all here to help lift the standard of refereeing in American Samoa and who knows, possibly in another five or 10 years someone from this room could be out there officiating international matches,” Mark Hester said.
“This is a great opportunity for us especially since we have a lot of new faces in this course,” explained Uinifareti Aliva, FFAS Competitions Manager and also Head of Referees. “We also have three females attending the course and hope they continue and strive to become match officials for us.
“Our National League will kick off in September and this course is going to help our referees and assistant referees prepare to officiate our biggest competition of the year,” Aliva added.
Assisting the FIFA RAP team of Mark and Mike Hester are FFAS’ local referee instructors Aliva, Lemusa Alatasi, David Crichton and Faimalo Tapui as well as fitness instructors Tala Fa’alava’au and Sione Mau.
The course will close on August 8 and includes quizzes on practical and theoretical sessions throughout the five-day seminar.

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