UAE: 137 teams sweat it out for top spot at Gov Games

Thousands gathered at Expo 2020 Dubai to cheer on the participants, including the Dubai Crown Prince

File photo
File photo

By SM Ayaz Zakir

Published: Fri 10 Dec 2021, 6:15 PM

Last updated: Fri 10 Dec 2021, 6:16 PM

The third edition of Gov Games 2021 kicked off on Thursday at the Expo Village, with a total of 137 teams competing against each other in an electrifying event that tested their physical strength, mental abilities and strategic thinking.

Thousands gathered at Expo 2020 Dubai to cheer and support the participants as they fulfilled their tasks.

Gov Games is one of the many initiatives that is held under the patronage of His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of the Executive Council.

The participants comprise government employees, citizens and residents. On the first day, Sheikh Hamdan was seen cheering on his team, F3, at the event.

Gov Games 2021 witnessed intense competition on the first day for the 'community games' category, during which 36 teams participated in nine challenges on four tracks.

The remarkable participation of teams reflected the growing awareness among community members to adopt a healthy lifestyle. Six teams qualified for the final round, including:

Khaleej Times caught up with a few participants to understand the importance of Gov Games.

Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (Dewa) is all set to give their best shot in this year's edition.

Meera Al Mubarak said the team has some great athletes, some of whom are experienced, while others are competing for the first time.

Abdullah Hamid Al Hoseni, an employee in the accident investigation department of General Civil Aviation Authority (GCCA), said he is pumped for this year's edition of Gov Games.

"I have gotten first place in such obstacle games in Romania and bagged third once," he said.

Al Hoseni has been a bodybuilder for the past 14 years and has competed five times. "I am now back to do this with my team. We are here to smash and crash and get my team the top spot," he said.

The main man of the GCCA team is Ahmed Al Jallaf, assistant director of Air Navigation Services. He said he believes that events such as Gov Games help foster productivity among government employees.

The team began prepping for this year's edition of Gov Games nearly two months ago.

"We are well-prepared and ready to take on the challenge in a positive and transparent way," Al Jallaf said. "We are thankful to the organisers and sponsors for supporting this event."

The Knowledge and Human Development Authority (KHDA), on the other hand, has been preparing for the event for the last three months.

Abdul Rahman Omar, a member of the KHDA team, said the event is something participants look forward to all year. "It is a great bonding for us," he said.

Omar added that the best part about the games is that the obstacles do not rely on physical strength.

"It is very technical and we are competing on day two. We planned our strategies and (decided) how to go about the obstacles on day one," he said.


Right before entering the arena, Ahmed Al Falasi, team manager of the General Directorate of Residency and Foreigners Affairs (GDRFA), wished all the teams luck.

Six teams will compete to qualify for the title on Saturday, December 11. Winners from all categories will be crowned the same evening.

The competition is being held in a venue developed using 1.8-km of steel props and 640 tonnes of building materials for the 10 complex obstacles. The venue is the largest of its kind in the region.

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