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Pitroipa set to play final after ref admits error

PITROIPA-REDJOHANNESBURG, South Africa, February 8 – Burkina Faso’s star winger Jonathan Pitroipa, who picked up a red card in Wednesday’s semi-final, is set to play in Sunday’s Africa Cup of Nations final after all.

For Pitroipa to be able to take part the referee in Wednesday’s game had to admit he had made a mistake in booking the player for a second time for diving, something Tunisian Slim Jdidi has now done, CAf president Issa Hayatou said.

“Everyone realised that this referee did not officiate well,” Hayatou announced here on Friday.

“They’ve told me the referee has sent a letter saying he got it wrong.

“From this moment, the CAF executive committee will pass on the matter to the disciplinary commission, who will announce their decision today (Friday).

“The referee admitted his error in his report given to the (CAF) secretary general (Hicham El Amrani) — he recognised that he had got it wrong.”

Jdidi’s admission that he had erred paves the way for the red card to be rescinded and for Pitroipa to take his place in the Burkina Faso side to face Nigeria at Soccer City on Sunday.

Pitroipa produced the only goal in the 1-0 extra-time quarter-final win over Togo.

He has helped lighten the blow of the Burkinabe losing their best striker Alain Traore to injury.

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Jdidi, who has been suspended for his poor performance in Wednesday’s game, sent off the Rennes forward in the 117th minute of the game that Burkina won on penalties against Ghana.

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