There is no shortage of top sporting events in the Emirates and here’s our one-stop diary of everything that’s going on — welcome to our weekly feature, What’s Up UAE.
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FIFA CLUB WORLD CUP UAE 2017
Wednesday, December 6 to Saturday, December 16
The UAE is ready to welcome top teams from six continents for the annual tournament, which begins with Al Jazira’s home clash against Auckland City at the Hazza Bin Zayed Stadium in Al Ain on Wednesday.
After winning the CONMEBOL Copa Libertadores final last week, Brazilian side Gremio joined Jazira, Auckland (OFC), Mexico’s C.F. Pachuca (CONCACAF), Spanish giants Real Madrid (UEFA), Morocco’s Wydad Athletic Club (CAF) and Japan’s Urawa Red Diamonds (AFC) to complete the line-up of teams.
OMEGA DUBAI LADIES CLASSIC
Wednesday, December 6 to Saturday, December 9
Two-time major champion Suzann Pettersen is one of the star names who will be in action on the greens of Emirates Golf Club.
America’s Brittany Lincicome will also be part of the field, making her debut in Dubai, while rising English star Sophie Lamb is one to look out for.
ULTIMATE ATHLETICS RACE NIGHT UAE
Thursday, December 7 – 5pm
The popular race night returns as athletes take to the track across a range of different disciplines.
This time, New York University Abu Dhabi on Saadiyat Island will host the evening at their outdoor track and field stadium.
JOHNSON ARABIA DUBAI CREEK STRIDERS HALF MARATHON
Friday, December 8 – 6am
One of the most popular running events in the UAE sporting calendar takes place around the beautiful surrounds of Dubai Creek.
Around 1,700 runners will compete in the 16th edition of the race as the 21.1km course takes in beautiful Old Town Dubai, the Dhow Wharfage and the Old Souk.
For many, it is the ideal tune-up to January’s Dubai Marathon.
DUBAI MUSCLE SHOW
Friday, December 8; Saturday December 9
The world’s biggest athletes descend on the UAE for the second edition of the Dubai Muscle Show, which takes place at Dubai World Trade Center (Zabeel Halls 5 & 6).
Hundreds of sports nutrition, fitness and bodybuilding brands will be on site as well as international bodybuilding personalities in attendance.
du TOUGH MUDDER
Friday, December 8; Saturday December 9
The world-renowned obstacle course challenge returns over the weekend as mudders face the ultimate challenge of physical strength, stamina and mental grit at Hamdan Sports Complex.
In a country where jiu-jitsu is the combat sport of choice, Emirati teenager Noura Albloushi developed a passion for Muay Thai and is slowly making a name for herself in the UAE.
The 14-year-old picked up the sport when she was nine, and never looked back.
“I started when I was young, five years ago, my father pushed me and I got into it and loved it. Muay Thai helped me a lot in my life,” she says in the video above (provided by Abu Dhabi Sports Council).
“People’s reaction wasn’t okay at first and because of that they thought that girls shouldn’t do sports. I cheered myself so I could come here and show myself to the world and make people think that women can do sports also.”
Albloushi is keen on changing gender stereotypes in the UAE. She got selected to join the Muay Thai national team, which has come on the back of the foundation of a UAE Muay Thai federation last April.
“Fighting in the ring, she grabbed all the attention as an Emirati girl fighting in a sport considered to be for men only in our society,” says Sbee Rahal, Muay Thai coach at Titans.
The young Emirati has boundless ambition and is keen on getting a black belt and going pro.
“After getting picked to the national team I actually was nervous but half of me was also excited,” she added.
“I’m actually really proud, really willing to raise my name to the world just for my country. I want to achieve every gold medal in every championship, be a professional at Muay Thai, join international tournaments and represent the UAE.”
The Finnish driver comfortably secured the third win of his career, all coming this season since joining from Williams.
It was his 22nd career podium and 13th with Mercedes this season alone.
In the latest episode of UAE Spotlight, Niall McCague says there is no better place than the UAE to experience the thrill of race weekend away from the track.
Hamilton and other drivers had complained about how the design of Yas Marina Circuit makes for boring racing, but McCague insists Abu Dhabi is the perfect host for F1’s season finale.