Najeeb Meshkan, Majid Abdullah Al Usaimi, Thani Juma Berregad and Fatma Al Bannay at the announcement. - Photo by Juidin Bernarrd
Dubai - Biggest meet after Paralympics, world championship.
Forty nine countries have confirmed their participation for the eighth Fazza IPC Athletics Championship from March 17-19 at the Dubai Police Club Stadium. To be held under the patronage of Shaikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of the Dubai Sports Council (DSC), the event which is the largest after the Paralympics and the world championship, will also serve as a major qualification chance for many of the top athletes in the world.
Over 120 classifiers qualified by the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) will attend the event. The timings for the Fazza meet will be from 4pm to 10pm daily and entry is free. The qualifying rounds on March 15-16 are scheduled at the Dubai Club for the Disabled as well as the Dubai Police Officers' Club and Dubai Hospital.
The event will be organised and supervised by the Dubai Club for the Disabled with the support of their strategic partners - the Hamdan Bin Mohammed Heritage Center (HHC), the International Paralympic Committee (IPC), the General Authority for Youth and Sports Welfare (GAYSW), the DSC and the UAE Paralympic Committee.
Many of the participants are already in Dubai with the inaugural IPC Athletics Asia-Oceanic event just over during the past weekend. Thani Juma Berregad, the chairman of the Organising Committee, said: ""We welcome well over 660 athletes from 49 countries, including talented, home-grown Emirati athletes.
This is another opportunity for the UAE athletes who performed so well to finish fifth at the Asia-Oceania, to qualify for the Paralympics in Rio immediately after the Olympics." Majid Abdullah Al Usaimi, executive director at the Dubai Club for the Disabled and director of the Fazza Championships for the Disabled, Fatma Al Bannay, head of the Media Office at Hamdan Bin Mohammed Heritage Center and Najeeb Meshkan, the technical director for the Fazza Championships for the Disabled were also present at the announcement at the Dubai Club for the Disabled. Al Osaimi said: "We are exceptionally grateful to the organising committee for their continued dedication in finalising all the arrangements in record time and with accuracy and precision. The championship's success comes at a crucial time for us, as the tournament directly follows the Asia Oceania Championship which took place this week."
"Through our strategic partnership with the Dubai Club for the Disbaled, the Hamdan bin Mohammed Center has managed to provide full support for the Fazza Championships for the Disabled," said Fatma.
The competition will be divided into track and field segments, with the track segment to include races of 100m, 200m, 400m, 800m, 1,500m, 5,000m, 4x 100m, and 4x 400m, while the field events will include the shot put and javelin, discus, long jump, club throw, high jump, and the triple jump.
The differently abled athletes will compete in categories set for those with motor impairment, paralysis, visual and/or intellectual impairments, and amputations.