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Monday, 29 May, 2000, 16:25 GMT 17:25 UK
Macau soccer punch-up
A friendly football international between Hong Kong and Macau took a distinctly unfriendly turn when the referee began punching one of the players about the head.


Lee Kin-wo at an exhibition match at Hong Kong Stadium in 1999
Lee Kin-wo, seen here at another match, was beaten around the head
The bizarre incident happened after Macau referee Choi Kuok-kun awarded a free kick against Hong Kong winger Lee Kin-wo nine minutes from the end of the match.

Lee showed his dismay by swearing at the referee, who then pulled a red card and gave him his marching orders.

The Hong Kong player turned and kicked the ball at Choi, hitting him on the shoulder.

Choi reacted by punching Lee several times in the head, to the amazement of the fans around the pitch.

That's the first time I've seen the referee strike a player

Hong Kong coach Casemiro Mior

The pair were eventually pulled apart by players from both teams.

The incident during the game in Macau was broadcast on Hong Kong television. Hong Kong went on to win 1-0 courtesy of a header by Ricky Cheng Siu-chung.

'He didn't use his brain'

Reports say Choi is likely to be disciplined by the Asian Football Confederation following the attack.

Macau Football Association spokesman Rego Alexandre said they would wait for the referee's match report before deciding what action to take.

Hong Kong manager Peter Leung was quoted as saying both parties were to blame.

"Lee didn't use his brain. He acted in an inappropriate manner," he told the South China Morning Post. "We all saw that the referee was wrong but so was Lee."

Hong Kong coach Casemiro Mior told the Post he had never seen such an incident before.

"That's the first time I have seen the referee strike a player in all my years in football," he added.

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