27 December, 2007

You’re A Long Way From Home Pretty Boy

Those crazy Far-Easterners eh. In a friendly Christmas Eve match in the Johor province, Malaysia, a referee produced first a red card, and then a handgun. After both teams in the local derby got a touch “unruly” after a controversial sending off, the part-time policeman dashed to his nearby meat wagon to pick up a weapon, before discharging what he described as “warning shots” into the air.

The mob understandably dissipated as this furor threatened to reach boiling point and police back-up arrived. Johor police chief Hussin Ismail told STT (via sister affiliate the New Straits Times) that they are currently “investigating as to whether the policeman was justified in taking out his firearm and discharging it, and also why he had it with him during the match.” The un-named Judge Dredd wannabe is being held in custody at the moment pending this inquiry, while five players are also being detained for “suspicion of rioting.”

Far from it for STT to encourage fire-arms but perhaps arming our Premier league referees with small-caliber weaponry would make players think twice before surrounding and threatening them. Maybe make them actually Nerf guns and just don’t tell the players?