SAO PAULO, Oct 20 (Reuters) - A referee in northern Peru halted a cup match eight minutes early after five players went down injured at the same time in an apparent bid to have a match they were losing abandoned, local media reported on Monday.
Five players from Defensor Bolivar feigned injury in Sunday’s first leg of their Copa Peru semi-final against Defensor La Bocana, according to Depor newspaper.
Bolivar were losing 4-1 at the time and lost another goal as their players writhed on the ground.
Having already had two men sent off, the referee had no option but to halt the game early. At least seven players are required on each side.
The second leg, which is due to take place on Thursday, is now in doubt as authorities decide whether to punish Bolivar.
The winners of the regional qualifier will go into the national competition. (Reporting by Andrew Downie, editing by Alan Baldwin)