Tunisia complain to CAF following full-time chaos with rematch decision expected
'We will do whatever it takes to defend the rights of the national team'
Tunisia's football federation (FTF) has written to the Confederation of African Football (CAF) to complain about their Africa Cup of Nations game against Mali being ended 13 seconds early.
Mondher Kebaier's side were trailing 1-0 when referee Janny Sikazwe - who was later rushed to hospital with sunstroke - blew for full-time early.
The Zambian official had already blown for full-time after 85 minutes, before noticing that he had made a mistake and instructed play to continue
FTF official Hussein Jenaieh has said that Tunisia will 'do whatever it takes' to defend the national team's right.
He said: "We will do whatever it takes to defend the rights of the national team.
"We are not children."
While FTF media officer Kais Reguez refused to expand on details about the nature of Tunisia's complaint, he did confirm that a formal complaint had been lodged.
"As long as the file is in the hands of the CAF committees, we cannot speak out," Reguez told BBC Sport Africa.
The referee blows the whistle before the 90 minutes are up...
VAR checks, two penalties and a red card... no stoppage time?!
It ends Tunisia 0-1 Mali 👀 pic.twitter.com/tPoiw7ZNGX
— Sky Sports Football (@SkyFootball) January 12, 2022
Referee Sikazwe was taken to hospital following the chaotic scenes at the Limbe Stadium, which is why the fourth official was set to take charge of the remaining minutes as it appeared that both teams were preparing to return to the field.
However, while Mali reappeared, Tunisia did not - which reports suggesting that some of their players were taking ice baths.
"The referee had sunstroke, which affected his decisions in the game," CAF refereeing official Essam Abdul Fattah told Egyptian media.
"After the game, he needed to go hospital because the weather was so hot."
Speaking about the incident, the CAF said on Thursday that it was awaiting further details from the various match officials before commentating on the situation.
"CAF is forwarding these documents to the competent bodies of CAF," the body said in a statement.
"At this stage, CAF is not in a position to make further comment until the responsible bodies indicate the way forward."
According to Yallakora, a decision regarding a potential rematch between Tunisia and Mali is expected in the next 72 hours.
It adds that Tunisia have complained that the match official tasked with monitoring the game was not present, as well as noting interference by CAF Competition Director Samson Adamu in an attempt to force them to play to remaining few minutes.
Sikazwe was previously suspended under allegations of corruption in 2018, due to the manner in which he handled a CAF Champions League match between Espérance Sportive de Tunis of Tunisia and Primiero Agosto of Angola.
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