One of the UAE’s most inspiring athlete stories is being showcased in Nike’s latest campaign.
The Dream Crazier campaign has reached the UAE and features five-time UAE Ice Skating National Champion, Zahra Lari.
Zahra Lari’s ‘Dream Crazier’ film, above, tells her story of paving the way for the next generation of female athletes in the region. Fearlessly holding fast to her dreams since age 16, Lari has championed representing and building the women’s sports community in the Middle East.
Her success resulted in her making history, becoming the world’s first figure skater to compete in a hijab, the UAE’s first figure skater to compete in the Winter Games qualifications in 2018, and leading the UAE to become the first Arab state to join the International Skating Union.
Lari continues to build up a community of fearless athletes in an unlikely sport and glides through championing the inclusion of Muslim athletes around the world, making her more than ready to accomplish her crazy dream to lead a group of female athletes to raise the UAE flag for the first time.
Zahra said: “I set a pretty big goal for myself. And in order for me to reach that goal, it’s important for me to wake up at dawn every day to practice and not complain. Yes, I’m tired, but so is everyone else. A champion is not made by staying in bed. You have to work hard.”
Salah Ahmed of Dubai Public Prosecution is hoping his team will make it fourth time lucky when they meet Dubai Municipality in the final of the NAS Wheelchair Basketball Championship after finishing runners-up in the previous three seasons.
Dubai Public Prosecution qualified for their fourth successive final with a 38-19 win over Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (Dewa) in the semis, while defending champions Dubai Municipality prevailed 37-31 over Dubai Corporation for Ambulance Services to set up a repeat of last year’s final, where the men from Dubai Municipality had cruised to a facile 63-46 win.
“We are determined to win the title this time,” said Ahmed, who finished as the top scorer of the tournament in the previous three seasons. “We have played three consecutive finals and we have lost each time.
“It’s time to win the title now. We are really determined this year and really focused, and have taken every match seriously, right from the first game. All the players are ready for the final and ready to win the title this time.
“I have won the title of the top-scorer for three years, but winning an individual honour without the team title is not as much fun. This time I want to win the cup along with the top-scorer’s title.”
UNCLE SAEED CLINCH TITLE
In the NAS Padel Championship, Uncle Saeed defeated Mondia 2-0 to successfully defend their team title, while Valencia beat SHM for third place.
The Uncle Saeed team, whose patron is Sheikh Saeed bin Maktoum bin Juma Al Maktoum, President of UAE Padel Association, won the first tie of the final 6-2, 6-2 and then blanked Mondia 6-0, 6-0 in the second tie.
“Continuous training throughout the year and programmes being implemented by the UAE Padel Association, both in the Nad Al Sheba Sports Complex and other clubs, has led to a rise in the overall levels of the game in UAE,” said Sandy Farquharson, a member of the Uncle Saeed team.
“The result, 2-0, probably does not do justice to the quality of matches we have just played in the final. It was not as easy as the scoreboard suggests. The two matches took more than two hours and that should tell you how fiercely competitive the final was.
“The level of competition this year was really high and most matches were close.”
Organised by Dubai Sports Council under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of Dubai Sports Council, the NAS Sports Tournament is the biggest event of its kind in terms of participation and prize money, and has been held every year in the Holy Month of Ramadan since 2013.
The Tournament has seen more than 22,000 athletes take part over the past six seasons and the seventh season, being held under the slogan ‘Limitless Abilities’, has attracted more than 6,500 participants in 13 different events: Futsal, Volleyball, Padel, Fencing, Wheelchair Basketball, Futsal for People with Hearing Disabilities, NAS Night Challenge, the 5km and 10km Run, 75km Cycle Race, 3×3 Basketball, Jiu-Jitsu, Cricket and Snowboarding. There is a prize purse of AED 6 million on offer for them.
Group A: Saudi Driving School drew with F16 2-2.
Group B: Dubai Police drew with Al Taher 2-2; Al Bahri beat Tolerance 7-1.
Team Championship Final: Uncle Saeed beat Mondia 6-2, 6-2 and 6-0, 6-0. Third Place: Valencia beat SHM 6-2, 6-1.
NAS WHEELCHAIR BASKETBALL
Semi-finals: Dubai Municipality beat Dubai Corporation for Ambulance Services 37-31; Dubai Public Prosecution beat Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) 38-19.
ADNOC Abu Dhabi Marathon, organised by Abu Dhabi Sports Council, has revealed the total prize fund for the 2019 ADNOC Abu Dhabi Marathon at an exclusive press conference hosted by H.E. Aref Hamad Al Awani – General Secretary of Abu Dhabi Sports Council, and, Mr. Omar Suwaina Al Suwaidi, Executive Office Director of ADNOC.
The prize fund – which is one of the world’s largest – totals over $388,000 and has been increased for all race categories in this year’s ADNOC Abu Dhabi Marathon. Headlining the event, male and female winners of the 42.2km marathon will take home $100,000 each.
An all-new venue for the ADNOC Abu Dhabi Marathon event village was also announced at the press conference. ADNOC’s campus, next to Abu Dhabi’s famous landmark – ADNOC’s impressive headquarters – will play host to the event’s central hub where runners and spectators can enjoy a variety of family-focused fun activities. Located close to the Corniche and the start/finish line, this new venue will bring visitors even closer to the race action.
H.E Aref Al Awani, General Secretary of Abu Dhabi Sports Council said: “The prize fund announced today is one of the biggest in the world, and further confirms the ADNOC Abu Dhabi Marathon’s position as a world-class sporting event. In the Year of Tolerance in the UAE we are incredibly proud to be hosting an event which includes and rewards people from all corners of our diverse community. With our training programmes already underway we are committed to supporting runners of all abilities as they prepare to achieve their goals and we hope to inspire a future generation of runners to take part in the ADNOC Abu Dhabi Marathon in years to come.”
Omar Suwaina Al Suwaidi, Director, Executive Office Directorate at ADNOC, said: “At ADNOC, we have always been committed to bringing energy to life – because, put simply, our energy is the key to the UAE’s prosperity. Wherever there is energy, you will find us, and that is why we are so proud to be the title sponsor of the ADNOC Abu Dhabi Marathon.”
“With this commitment in mind, many of you will have noticed that, during the past 12 months, the ADNOC corporate campus has been undergoing extensive renovations to create a best-in-class working environment for our employees, and an unrivalled guest experience for our visitors. Today, I’m delighted to announce that, from 2019 onwards, the ADNOC Marathon fan village – or ‘ADNOC Energy Zone’ – will be hosted within the grounds of our new campus, providing an enhanced experience for our athletes, their families, and the entire UAE community”, he added.
Training sessions, which kicked-off on 6th May, are running every Monday from 9:30 pm – 10:30 pm throughout Ramadan at Al Hudayriat Island. After the Eid holiday, Monday training sessions will move to 6.15am and a second weekly training session will be hosted on Wednesdays – starting on 5th June – at Zayed Sports City from 7:45 pm to 9:00 pm.
Both training sessions will be hosted by ADNOC Abu Dhabi Marathon’s official coach – a member of USA Track & Field Association (USATF) and multiple winners of USATF long distance championships.
The 2019 ADNOC Abu Dhabi Marathon will take place on Friday 6th December following the UAE’s 48th National Day celebrations. Registrations are open, and every participant will receive a free race shirt and medal.
2019 ADNOC Abu Dhabi Marathon prices
2.5KM ‘Fun Run’: Dh50 (children under six take part for free)
5KM Race: Dh75
10KM Race: Dh150
42.2KM Marathon: Dh350 (podium finishers are eligible for an Age Group Prize Fund)
For more information visit: www.adnocabudhabimarathon.com