SINGAPORE — Singaporean referee Muhammad Taqi Jahari has been chosen as one of 24 video match officials at the 2022 World Cup in Qatar by football governing body Fifa.
Only four other Singaporeans had been chosen to officiate at the world’s most prestigious football tournament to date: George Suppiah and Shamsul Maidin refereed at the 1974 World Cup and the 2006 World Cup – both in Germany – respectively, while K. Visvanathan was the assistant referee at the 2002 World Cup in Korea/Japan and Jeffrey Goh was the reserve assistant referee at the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.
Taqi's selection comes after video match officials – also referred to as video assistant referees (VAR) – officiated for the first time at the tournament during the 2018 World Cup in Russia.
The 36-year-old was first selected by Fifa to be a video referee at the 2017 Under-20 World Cup in South Korea. A few months later, he was selected to be a referee alongside Singaporean assistant referees Edwin Lee and Ronnie Koh at the 2017 Under-17 World Cup in India.
Two years later, he officiated some matches at the 2019 Under-20 World Cup in Poland.
The Asean Football Federation Referee of the Year in 2017 had also officiated in regional tournaments including the 2015 AFC Asian Cup in Australia and the 2019 AFC Asian Cup in the United Arab Emirates.
Fifa has selected 36 referees and 69 assistant referees to officiate at the upcoming World Cup to be held across eight venues in Qatar from 21 November to 18 December.
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