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10 April 2024, 10:43

Sustainability, Unity and Youth take centre stage at opening ceremony of Gulf Youth Games

DUBAI, 10 April (BelTA - Emirates News Agency) - Dubai Opera is gearing up to host the opening ceremony of the first Gulf Youth Games, which will be held in the UAE from April 16 to May 2. The event will feature 3,500 male and female athletes competing in 25 individual and team sports.

The opening ceremony will be held on April 16 and will be attended by 1,500 people. The ceremony will be 40 minutes long and will feature a variety of performances that highlight the themes of sustainability, unity, and youth.

The opening ceremony will be a creative celebration of the Gulf region's culture and heritage. It will feature a variety of performances, including traditional dances, music, and acrobatics. The ceremony will also use cutting-edge technology to create a visually stunning experience.

One of the key themes of the opening ceremony will be sustainability. The ceremony will use sustainable materials and practices, such as recycled materials and LED lighting. The goal is to create a beautiful and environmentally friendly event.

The opening ceremony will also be a celebration of the unity of the Gulf region. The ceremony will feature performances from all six GCC countries, and it will highlight the shared values and traditions of the region.

The opening ceremony will also be a celebration of youth. The ceremony will feature young athletes from all six Gulf countries, and it will highlight the importance of sports in promoting physical and mental health.

Fares Mohammed Al Mutawa, Secretary-General of the National Olympic Committee, and Deputy Chairman of the Supreme Organising Committee for the first Gulf Youth Games, confirmed the opening ceremony will be a diverse and creative event that will reflect the rich culture and heritage of the UAE and the Gulf region. It will also showcase the development of the Olympic and sports movements in all GCC countries.

Al Mutawa believes this combination will create a unique and memorable experience that aligns with the theme of the event: "Our Gulf is One... Our Youth is Promising."

Abdulaziz Al-Sulaiman, Member of the Board of Directors of the National Olympic Committee and Chairman of the Heritage Committee and the Opening and Closing Ceremony Committee, said: "The themes of the opening ceremony were chosen to reflect the values and goals of the event. The sustainability theme will highlight the importance of using sustainable materials.

“This concept focuses on eco-friendly practices for major sporting event ceremonies. It explores innovative ways to utilize sustainable materials for shows, sculptures, and design elements. This approach aims to create a visually stunning experience while minimizing environmental impact and harmful emissions. It aligns perfectly with the vision of our wise leadership and their commitment to sustainability, exemplified by hosting the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP 28) held in Dubai last year. The recommendations from COP 28 further guide this approach towards a greener future for major sporting events.

“The unity theme will celebrate the strong bonds of brotherhood between the people of the GCC.”

He emphasised the shared history and values that unite the region, as evident in past joint events. Sporting events serve as a platform to showcase this cohesion and interconnectedness, fostering principles like respect, sportsmanship, and fair play.

“The ceremony will also place a special focus on the region's youth, who are considered its future. Expect vibrant and dynamic performances throughout the event, highlighting their energy and potential.”

Ibrahim Al Assam, a member of the board of directors of the National Olympic Committee and head of the media committee for the first Gulf Youth Games, confirmed a comprehensive media plan is in place, executed by an outstanding team, to promote, cover, and disseminate information about the championship hosted by the UAE.

Al Assam further elaborated that pre-approved media coverage commenced a month prior to the event's kick-off. This coverage concentrated on generating excitement for the upcoming Gulf event, showcasing the participating teams' preparations, and providing insights into the efforts undertaken by various committees.

"We are keen on implementing the plan professionally to ensure its success, and we have seen great responses from all colleagues assigned to the task of preparing news about the participating teams and sharing them through an interactive electronic newsletter.

“In addition, we are using various social media channels to broadcast news and promote the games. We have great confidence that things are progressing well, and we hope to achieve the best professional performance indicators in the coming period as the countdown to the start of the event begins," he added.

Al Assam praised the smooth workflow in the media committee through various tasks assigned to field colleagues, the "desk" committee, the "audit" committee, the "social media" committee, and the photographers' committee, resembling a miniature media institution. He added that this unique experience over the past period could represent a real nucleus for establishing a strong base based on the high professional performance of a group of distinguished colleagues to undertake any future tasks in covering sports events hosted by the country.

He called for work during the coming period to follow up on news and preparations of the Gulf federations participating in the event, and to communicate with their officials to highlight the latest technical arrangements and lists of participating elements, based on a single and fundamental goal that equals the importance of this event, which consolidates common GCC visions in integrating roles and programmes to elevate the sports system in the GCC countries and achieve the competitive aspirations of Gulf youth.

Meanwhile, the UAE youth handball team continues their daily training at Al Nahda Club Hall ahead of first Gulf Youth Games UAE 2024. Khamis Al Suwaidi, the handball team manager, stated that the team has begun the second phase of preparation, finalizing the names of those participating in the tournament.

"We will push the youth team despite the tournament being for the youth category, but we decided to prepare the youth team for the 10th Asian Youth Handball Championship, the qualifiers for the 2025 World Championship hosted by Iran, which will take place from August 25 to September 3."

He added that the team played a friendly match against Al Bataeh, and there will be another friendly match against the Sharjah Youth Team. After that, the players will have a two-day break for the Eid holiday, and then they will enter the third and final phase of preparation before the start of the competitions. Al Suwaidi thanked Shabab Al Ahli Club for hosting the team's training and the board of directors of the Handball Federation, chaired by Nabil Ashour, for providing all kinds of support to the team, noting that there will be a three-day internal camp and attempts to play a friendly match during the camp before official competitions.

The latest roster of the youth team includes Rashid Al Qars, Mohammed Al Mazmi, Masoud Al Yassi, Manaa Al Ketbi, Saed Al Ali, Mohammed Al Oud, Abdullah Al Obaidli, Ibrahim Al Ashar, Mansour Al Qars from Sharjah, Abdullah Al Falasi, Nawaf Khaled, Omar Shah, Moussa Al Aswad, Abdullah Al Badawi from Al Ahli, Jasim Al Nawabi, Hamdan Al Hesai, Ahmed Lnjawi from Al Wasl, Al Hassan Al Shaddadi, Al Hussein Al Shaddadi, and Abu Bakr Al Jabri from Al Jazeera.

The UAE bowling team continues its intensive preparations.

Ahmed Khamees Al Ali, the team's manager, revealed that ‘White Bowling Team’ will finalize its preparations that began in early February through a ten-day internal camp immediately after Eid Al Fitr, at the Dubai International Bowling Center, which will be the venue for the tournament.

The tournament will feature four teams, including Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and the host country, the UAE.

Regarding the training sessions, Al Ali said: "During Ramadan, the training sessions were held daily, starting at 9pm. After Ramadan, the training sessions will be held in the morning, and the coach, Ahmed Ateeq, will focus on developing the element of accuracy among the players to take them to the highest levels, as it is a fundamental factor in favoring one team over another, along with other factors related to ball selection, luck, and the coach's instructions."

Regarding the strongest competitors for the UAE bowling team for the title, the manager of the youth bowling team said: "We have very high confidence in the efficiency of our team members, who are characterized by intelligence and good behavior during competitions. In general, the levels are very close between the four teams, making it difficult to predict who will win the title.

“However, based on preparations, our strongest competitor is the Qatar team, which hosts many tournaments throughout the year, followed by the Saudi Arabia team, and also the Bahrain team, which will have its say. It should be noted that the circumstances of the competition may lead to a different reality during the tournament, as bowling always witnesses constant changes in levels before and during competitions.

“I would like to point out that the tournament lost the Kuwait team, who did not register, and we hoped for its participation to increase the competitiveness.”

It is worth mentioning that the UAE youth bowling team includes four main players: Rashid Ali Al Nawabi, Salem Badr Abdullah, Mohammed Hassan Al Firdan, and Rashid Abdullah Al Marzouqi, in addition to two reserve players, and the names of the main players will be decided through the top four in the ranking of the team's players in the Ramadan Dubai Championship, which concluded its competitions on Friday, April 5.
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