Maltese water polo referees gain valuable experience at Habawaba International Festival

Lignano Sabbiadoro, Italy – From July 24th to 29th, 2024, Maltese referees Juana Cauchi and Debbie Tully had the honor of participating in the prestigious Habawaba International Festival, held at the Bella Italia & EFA Village. This event, renowned as the world’s largest youth water polo festival, brought together 80 teams from various countries, including Italy, Australia, the USA, Hungary, and even Palestine.

The festival, known for its competitive spirit and strong emphasis on fair play, provided a unique platform for young athletes to showcase their skills and sportsmanship. The atmosphere was electric, with teams and spectators alike celebrating the core values of respect and camaraderie.

Juana Cauchi and Debbie Tully were nominated by the Gruppo Ufficiali Gara (GUG), the Italian refereeing association, to officiate at this esteemed event. Under the guidance of Dante Saeli, a renowned international referee, they honed their skills in game coverage and decision signaling. “Refereeing five games in a day was challenging, but with enough concentration, we managed it,” said Juana Cauchi. “We also took on game jury duties in between matches, which added to the experience.”

One of the standout moments for the Maltese referees was witnessing the determination and courage of the Palestinian team. Their participation and spirit left a lasting impression on everyone present.

This experience is expected to significantly benefit Maltese water polo. Juana and Debbie plan to use the skills and knowledge gained to improve the level of refereeing locally, will be crucial for the sport’s future development in Malta.

Looking ahead, both referees expressed their enthusiasm for participating in similar events in the future, continuing their journey of growth and contribution to the sport they love.

Click HERE to learn more about this promotion! (18+)

Leave a reply