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Hamdan Heritage Centre win at NAS Ramadan tourney

Hamdan Heritage Centre win at NAS Ramadan tourney

Led by UAE skipper Tariq Alyais, formerly of Sharjah Electricity and Water Authority, the Heritage Centre men played with more purpose and drive.



By Moni Mathews (principal Correspondent)

Published: Sat 27 Jun 2015, 12:12 PM

Last updated: Wed 8 Jul 2015, 3:12 PM

Dubai — The 10-team wheelchair basketball event of the third $8 million prize fund Nad Al Sheba (NAS) Ramadan Sports Tournament-2015, began at the Dubai Club for the Disabled in Qusais late Thursday night.

Action from a volleyball match in the NAS Ramadan Sports Tournament. — Supplied photo
Action from a volleyball match in the NAS Ramadan Sports Tournament. — Supplied photo

Balladiya (Dubai Municipality) defeated Dubai Duty Free (DDF) 20-0 in the opening match after enjoying a comfortable cushion of nine points in the first period.

In the second fixture in front of over 100 spectators at the small indoor facility, the professionally set up squad from the Hamdan bin Mohammed Heritage Centre defeated the Ittihad Community Club of the Union Co-Operative Society 38-22 after leading 16-11 in the first 10-minute session.

In last two matches on the opening night, Dubai Public Prosecution thrashed Dubai Police 56-6, while Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) thumped Dubai Ambulance 50-6.

Led by UAE skipper Tariq Alyais, formerly of Sharjah Electricity and Water Authority, the Heritage Centre men played with more purpose and drive. “This is my first outing for the Hamdan bin Mohammed Heritage Centre side and the new faces have all come forward with a lot of energy and initiative to form a good side in such a short time,” said Alyais.

“We have two Filipino players who are able bodied and they got adjusted to the needs of wheelchair basketball in just two days. Further, Ibrahim Salim, another UAE national team player, was in good touch tonight (Thursday), making it easier to overcome the good passing and distribution work of Ittihad.”

The customised conditions for the event include a 20-minute playing time and the chance to invite able bodied men (maximum of two). Then comes the stipulation for two players with special needs who are employment by the team or institute they represent.

“We need to have a mixed version to get a bigger response for the sport which has firm roots here,” said Isa Darwish, wheelchair basketball coordinator for NAS Ramadan this season.

International body (IWBF) classification officer for the event from Tripoli, Lebanon, Toufic Allouche, said: “The rest of the basics are all the same, with all the mandatory sideline officials and support units when it is a regular international wheelchair tournament.”

In Group of the wheelchair basketball tournament are the Hamdan bin Mohammed Heritage Centre, Niaba, Dubai Police, Union Co-Operative Society’s Al Ittihad Community Club and Dubai Sports Channel while Group B has Balladiya (Dubai Municiplaity), DEWA, Dubai Ambulance Services, Dubai Duty Free and hosts Dubai Club for the Disabled.

Battles resume in the group qualifying phase tonight (Saturday) and these early rounds continue till Tuesday. Wednesday night will be the day for the semifinals and Sunday when the title round will take place. All action begin at 10pm and matches will go on well past midnight. Elsewhere at the main venue some 20km away, the same night and early hours of Friday, Surprise, Innovate and Fahood Zabeel joined overnight qualifiers Dubai 2021 in the volleyball semifinals.

Dubai 2021 had become the first team into the last four stages following their close 3-2 win over defending champions Zabeel on Wednesday. On Thursday night, Surprise and Fohood Zabeel secured identical 3-0 wins over Storm and Dubai Dream, while Innovate overcame a resolute Storm Falcons 3-1 for a semis berth. Dubai 2021 will take on Fohood Zabeel, while Innovate will face Surprise in the two semifinals that will take place at the NAS Sports Complex after a short break, on July 7. The final will be conducted on July 9.

In the padel tennis reigning world champion Juan Martin Diaz and Maxi Sanchez moved to the top of Group A with a 6-3, 6-7, 6-0 win over fourth-ranked Jordi Munoz and Aday Santana. Sanchez and Santana also made it to the last four grade due to their two earlier wins in the group.

Juani Mieres, the 2014 world champion topped Group B with his partner Sanyo Gutierrez after the duo powered their way to a third straight win in as many days with a 6-0, 7-6 win over Adrian Allemandi and Miguel Lamperti. The semis in the discipline will be held on tonight (Saturday) with Juan Martin Diaz and Maxi Sanchez facing Adrian Allemandi and Miguel Lamperti, while Sanyo Gutierrez and Juani Mieres take on Jordi Munoz and Aday Santana.


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