Abdulrahman challenges tennis legend Nadal to MWTC showdown

Sport360 staff 09:54 20/12/2016
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Abdulrahman on court at Zayed Sports City.

Fresh from his thrilling ‘Panenka’ penalty against Barcelona, Omar Abdulrahman swapped the pitch for the tennis court at Zayed Sports City ahead of the 2016 Mubadala World Tennis Championship, which takes place between December 29-31.

Showcasing his skill and control on centre court in Abu Dhabi, with some keepie uppies, flicks and tricks, the Al Ain midfielder spoke of his excitement about the impending tournament, encouraging fans to join him in Abu Dhabi at the tennis season-opening championship.

Donning a tennis shirt signed from fellow athlete and reigning Mubadala World Tennis Championship champion Rafael Nadal, Abdulrahman recorded a video message for the Spaniard.

He cheekily challenging him to a rally or two during the tournament and quipped that he might be able to ‘show him a thing or two’.

Speaking about the family-friendly tournament, the 25-year-old said: “It’s great to be here in Abu Dhabi ahead of what will no doubt be another show-stopping tournament, looking at the incredible line-up this year. I really enjoy watching tennis, especially the level of talented sportsmen that play at Mubadala World Tennis Championship year-after-year. I like how Rafa plays and wish him the best of luck in the tournament.

“MWTC is a great few days of entertainment, no matter what sport you follow. There are activities for the whole family in the Tennis Village, including autograph sessions with the players, tennis clinics to learn some new skills and a special ‘Kid’s Day’ that I will be spending time at on the opening day – December 29.”

With a line-up of stars guaranteed to get the fans out of their seats, the Mubadala World Tennis Championship offers three days of action packed entertainment for the whole family. With the Grand Final taking place at 3pm on Day Three, tennis fans can experience the best of both worlds – witnessing the final and prize ceremony with ample time to enjoy the New Year’s festivities later that evening.

Once again, MWTC will offer fans sizzling play from the first ball. Charismatic Frenchman Jo-Wilfried Tsonga will take on Belgium’s No.1 David Goffin in the tournament opener on day one while reigning champion Rafael Nadal will come up against long-term rival Tomas Berdych in the second match of the opening day.

It will be the first time the Spaniard sensation and world number nine has played on the first day of the tournament in his eight appearances, with the potential for the 14-time Grand Slam champion to play all three days.

World No.1 and recent winner of the BBC Sports Personality of the Year 2016, Andy Murray, receives a bye straight into day two along with newly crowned world No. 3 Milos Raonic, coming off what has been a sensational year for the Canadian having secured his highest ATP ranking to date. Murray will face the winner of Tsonga vs Goffin, with Raonic ready to take on either Berdych or Nadal.

Speaking of his prediction for who will ace their way to the final, Abdulrahman says it is “too close to call”, noting the unpredictable nature of sport is all part of the fun as a spectator. Fans can meet Omar Abdulrahman on Thursday 29th December between 2-3pm in the Tennis Village. He will be speaking to fans and signing autographs along with players from the star-studded Mubadala World Tennis Championship line up.

Designed for the ultimate family day out for all, the Tennis Village adds to the exceptional event atmosphere of Mubadala World Tennis Championship to ensure there is plenty of room to catch the fast-paced tennis action as well as get up close and personal with the players.

Tickets to the 2016 Mubadala World Tennis Championship start from AED 50. Exclusive premier hospitality packages are also available including food and limited beverages, star player meet and greets and courtside seating starting from AED 1,400.

#AbuDhabiGP race ticket holders redeeming their Y1 Access benefits receive a 20% discount on Category 2 tickets. Y1 Access is the money-off advantage programme for 2016 #AbuDhabiGP race ticket holders and is offered for selected FLASH events until February 2017. For further information please visit www.yasalam.ae.

For more information about the 2016 Mubadala Tennis World Championship, visit: www.mubadalawtc.com and www.facebook.com/mubadalaworldtennischampionship.

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