World’s top swimmers to make splash in Dubai

Swimming fans are in for a treat as the likes of Ryan Lochte, Aaron Peirsol, Emily Seebohm and Leisel Hones would be in action at the Fina World Swimming Championships (25m) in Dubai.

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Published: Wed 20 Oct 2010, 12:46 AM

Last updated: Mon 6 Apr 2015, 5:05 AM

The preparations for the 10th edition of Fina event are going on in a smooth and professional manner, organisers said on Tuesday. “With top swimmers already confirming their participation and many more set to do so as the championships draw closer, we are certain to see some top-class racing,” Obaid Al Shamsi, championships director, told reporters at a press conference.

The championships will be held at the state-of-the-art 15,000-seater Dubai Sports Complex, located on the Dubai Bypass Road from December 15 to 19. “Dubai took a big decision in organising the championships. With the number of participants surpassing all previous records, Dubai is set to host one of the biggest swimming championships,” Al Shamsi said. A total of 119 national federations and 708 swimmers have already confirmed their participation, helping Dubai overhaul the previous record set by Manchester (116 federations and 623 swimmers) two years ago.

Launched first in Palma de Mallorca, Spain in 1993, the prestigious event was later held in Brazil, Sweden, Hong Kong, Greece, Russia, US and UK.

“A Gulf nation is hosting this event for the first time. We expect a lot of participation from the spectators for this world-class event. We all look forward to the success of the championships,” said Dr Khalid Mohammed Al Zahed, vice championships director.

On Octorber 10, Shaikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, had launched the Dh1.1 billion Dubai Sports Complex, where the championships are scheduled to be held. A total of 40 swimming events will take place at the championships. Some of the top swimmers who have already confirmed their participation include Ryan Lochte, Aaron Peirsol, Natalie Coughlin (all US), Leisel Jones, Geoff Huegill (Australia) and Brazil’s Cesar Cielo.

“With athletes of this calibre confirmed, we are certain to see some top class swimming and with the majority of tickets priced between Dh10-30 per session, it represents an excellent opportunity for the whole family to come and see some of the best athletes in the world here in Dubai,” Shamsi added.

“Before the main championships, a test event would be conducted from November 5 to 6, where top Gulf countries will take part. Around 230 swimmers from 10 countries, including the UAE, are expected for the test event,” Dr Khalid added.

Organisers said tickets for the championships are on sale and can be purchased at www.boxofficeme.com or via the official web site: www.dubaiswimming2010.ae.

pradeep@khaleejtimes.com



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