Solomon Football > News > 2013 FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup > Pado’s credentials earn call-up

Pado’s credentials earn call-up

Beach soccer referee Hugo Pado, who was in charge of yesterday’s encounter between Vanuatu and New Caledonia, is the only Oceania referee included on the list to travel to the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup which is being held from 18-28 September.
A teacher by profession, 34-year-old Pado strives to achieve to the highest possible standard in a role he first became interested in following a course in his home country in 2008.
“Beach soccer was a new discipline in Solomon Islands and when the first refereeing course was offered in 2008 I was one of the first people to sign up,” Pado says. “As a former middle-distance runner and sprinter, I felt that beach soccer would give me the challenge I was looking for to help me stay fit after my career as a runner ended.”
Officiating at the highest level is not new to Pado, who was appointed to the 2011 FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup in Ravenna, Italy. Not only did Pado register among the best in the pre-competition fitness tests, he so impressed with his performance during the group stages that he was called on to officiate during the 3rd/4th place final between El Salvador and Portugal.
“There are many things that stand out for me after my first outing at the Beach Soccer World Cup. Firstly, the experience itself was magnificent for me since it is the biggest stage in this discipline,” he says.
“Secondly, I learnt a lot during my time at the World Cup from both the instructors and fellow referees and these lessons have helped in the past to years to aim higher. Thirdly there was a major feeling of achievement as well and officiating in my final match I could really reflect upon the hard work and my training and feel that it was worth it.”
Pado adds that meeting Rubio Cano Jesus, a leading beach soccer referee instructor, was a major highlight of his first FIFA event, and he relished opportunity to learn from the best.
“Basically, the event allowed me to test all my knowledge and understanding of the beach soccer Laws of the Game which was really great for me as it’s something I have never experienced at home or at the regional level. This is very important for me because I gained a deeper understanding and appreciation of my role as a referee.”
This year the World Cup is being held in much more familiar territory for the Solomon Islander as French Polynesia prepares to become the first Pacific island to host a senior FIFA event, a prospect he is looking forward to.
“I think this year will be special because it is my second time and therefore I have to lift the bar and utilise my experience from the 2011 Beach Soccer World Cup,” Pado says.
“It will be a personal, and also professional, challenge for me. However I am more confident compared to two years ago and having the event in our own region is a bonus because I can really feel at home in Tahiti.”
Since his first foray at the top level Pado has been working hard to maintain top physical condition as he continues to carve out a career as a beach soccer referee.
“This time around my training is more rigorous and I feel that I am in the right condition. The OFC RAP team has supported me well with a training programme and our local instructors are also working closely with me to ensure that fitness will not be an issue for me.”
Earning a call-up to his second consecutive World Cup event is surely achievement enough for many, however Pado says he is yet to reach his peak.
“I do not necessarily think I have reached the highest point in my career yet,” he says. “In the last Beach Soccer World Cup I reached the 3rd/4th final playoff but I hope that this year I can better that record and maybe officiate in the grand-final. That would be a dream come true.
“I also look forward to becoming a referee instructor and helping to train the next generation of referees in Solomon Islands and hopefully the region.”
Pado is currently honing his skills at the OFC Beach Soccer Championship in Noumea, New Caledonia which concludes today, before going on to Tahiti and the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup.

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