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UAE serves other Olympians’ strife to qualify for Paris

UAE serves other Olympians’ strife to qualify for Paris
5 July 2024 13:48

Dubai (Aletihad)

The National Olympic Committee will be sharing details about the UAE athletes headed for the Summer Olympics to be held in Paris this year this weekend, but the country is host to the aspirations of Olympic hopefuls from other countries as well.

Dubai can boast of having at least six young athletes competing in France when the quadrennial Olympics will be staged from July 26 to August 11. 

This athletes have blended or tried to achieve the balance between eligibility requirements to compete for their country of origin while making the best use of facilities, training infrastructure and other forms of support in the melting pot of nationalities that is the UAE. 
Swimmers form a big chunk of this lot. Born, bred or residing in Dubai, the six athletes are Indian badminton star Tanisha Crasto along with swimmers Yazan Al Bawwab (Palestine), Muhammad Ahmed Durrani (Pakistan), Rana Saad Al Din (Sudan), Karen Belbeisi (Jordan) and Eritrea’s Christina Rach.

Crasto represented the UAE at the junior level, but the 21-year-old has made the switch to India to train in a much larger, competitive lot and carve a spot for herself based out of her upbringing in Dubai. 

She has qualified to represent India in the doubles category along with Ashwini Ponnappa at the Paris Games. She expressed her gratitude for the efforts put in by the Dubai Sports Council while launching the Dubai Badminton Time programme, which gave her the opportunity to train, practice develop her talent while making it to the top of her sport.

Backed by her parents Tulip and Clifford, Tanisha came through the badminton system while utilising the facilities provided by an excellent sporting city like Dubai. 

Her father mentioned that the availability of top-class training facilities designed to the highest standards, along with the care and support for the sports sector from the academic wing gave his daughter the right platform in putting in hard hours of practice on court on a daily basis.
“The ever-ready presence of top-class coaches and sports specialists here have further contributed to giving our daughter the necessary experience to develop her level,” the senior Crasto said.

Swimmers Belbeisi from Jordan and Rush of Eritrea have been training since their teenage years at the Hamilton Academy at the state-of-the-art Hamdan Sports Complex. Last week, some prominent experts in the field of artificial intelligence visit to gauge and review the use of technology and advanced programmes employed at the Complex.

The three others swimmers – Al Bawwab, Durrani and Saad Al Din – have been training at the Speedo Academy since their budding years. All five swimmers from Dubai have competed in their respective age groups so far, at various competitions that have been held at the Hamdan Sports Complex.

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