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MBR Creative Sports Award announces names of winners of eleventh edition

DUBAI, 23rd November, 2021 (WAM) — The winners of the eleventh edition of the Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Creative Sports Award, were announced today at a ceremony held in the presence of H.H. Sheikh Mansour bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Chairman of the Dubai Sports Council.

A Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Global Initiative, the Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Creative Sports Award is the largest award of its kind in terms of prize money and categories, and the first dedicated to creativity in sports.

The Award ceremony, held at Deep Dive Dubai, the world’s deepest pool, was also attended by Mattar Al Tayer, Chairman of the Award’s Board of Trustees.

At the ceremony, H.H. Sheikh Mansoor bin Mohammed said the UAE continues to steadily raise its position as a destination for creativity that nurtures creative accomplishments in all spheres and sectors. By recognising leading local, regional and global personalities who have demonstrated excellence, the UAE seeks to promote a culture of creativity in various sectors, including the sports sector.

"The UAE’s leadership places the greatest importance on supporting excellence and creativity in all fields. Sponsoring, supporting and honouring innovators and spreading a culture of excellence is fundamental to building a bright future. In the 50 years since the nation’s foundation, the UAE’s achievements have set a model for development fuelled by innovation and creativity, both for the region and the world. Guided by the vision and wisdom of our leaders and driven by the efforts of our people, the UAE has emerged as a shining exemplar of excellence. Our aspirations do not have any limits and the word ‘impossible’ is not in our dictionary."

Sheikh Mansour bin Mohammed further said: "The Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum Creative Sports Award, sponsored by His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, and chaired by His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, President of the National Olympic Committee, reflects the directives of our leadership to work to promote and foster creativity in sports.

"Today, we honour a set of exceptional sporting personalities who have made outstanding contributions and become role models for creativity and excellence in their disciplines. This Award sends a message of recognition to all sportspersons and sports institutions that have sought to raise their level of performance and achievement."

The ceremony was also attended by several members of the Award's Board of Trustees, and the Board of Directors of Dubai Sports Council as well as prominent sports personalities.

Mattar Al Tayer, Chairman of the Award’s Board of Trustees, extended his gratitude to His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, Chairman of The Executive Council of Dubai, and patron of the Award, and His Highness Sheikh Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Chairman of the National Olympic Committee and Chairman of the Award, for their support and directives that have made the Award one of the most prestigious in the global sports sector.

Mattar Al Tayer said: "Since 2009, the Award has been appreciating and honouring innovators, and encouraging the sports sector to develop by spreading a culture of creativity in sports and honouring creators in the UAE, the Arab world and across the globe.

"Despite the challenges faced by the sporting sector worldwide, the eleventh edition of the Award achieved growth in the number of participants, to register 409 candidates, an increase of 14 per cent from the previous session, in addition to an increase in the number of award winners to 28, which confirms the status of the Award and the sport community’s keenness to compete for it."

He added: "We are pleased that the eleventh edition of the Award coincides with the country's celebrations of the Year of the 50th and the Expo 2020 Dubai. The Award presentation will take place on 9 January at Expo 2020 Dubai.

"We are also pleased to announce, in cooperation with the Central Bank and Emirates Post, that we will issue a silver coin and a commemorative stamp as a gift for the sports sector and an acknowledgement of the contributions of the Award to the sports sector."

The winners of the eleventh edition of the Award featured leading sports personalities and decision-makers, including Arab champions and heroes from the Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games, in addition to other national and Arab achievers.

Imran Khan, Prime Minister of the Republic of Pakistan, was named the winner of the International Sports Personality Award in appreciation of his efforts to turn Pakistan into one of the world's leading cricketing nations. He was captain of the Pakistan team that emerged victorious in the 1992 Cricket World Cup, defeating England in the final.

An inspirational sports icon, he continues to inspire young people as Prime Minister now, enhancing the status of sports in general and cricket in particular, and empowering Pakistani society through sports. Today, half of the country’s 221 million population identify themselves as cricket fans, and nearly 42,000 players are officially registered with the Pakistan Cricket Board.

In 2019, PM Imran Khan launched a pioneering $639 million initiative for the welfare of Pakistan’s youth, under which young men and women will be given scholarships and skill-development opportunities, including scholarships in sports. In June this year, PM Imran Khan announced plans to build a cricket ground in each of Pakistan’s 4,000-plus Union and Village Councils.

Sheikh Joaan bin Hamad Al Thani, President of Qatar Olympic Committee, has been named as the Arab Sports Personality for his long list of achievements since taking over as President of the Qatar Olympic Committee in 2015, including the unprecedented success of Qatari athletes at the Tokyo Olympic Games; they won two gold medals and a bronze, in what was Qatar’s best performance at the Olympics.

He was also chair of the Organising Committee of the 2015 World Handball Championship in Doha and contributed to Qatar’s hosting of many international sports events as well as the development of equestrian sport and the success of Qatari horses worldwide. He also led Qatar’s successful bid to host their second Asian Games in 2030. Doha had first hosted the premier continental championships in 2006.

Ali Ahmed Mabkhout – for his historical achievements at both the local as well as the international level, where he has emerged as the all-time top scorer for the UAE national team with 78 goals. Mabkhout has also broken the goal scoring record at the domestic level and is the UAE League’s all-time leading scorer with 175 goals. He is currently third on the list of international goal scorers.

Anas Nasser Al Otaiba, for winning the Presidency of the Asian Boxing Confederation and becoming Vice President of the International Boxing Association.

Ahmed Mohammed Al Hammadi, for being the first Arab to be chosen as the head referee for the International Weightlifting Federation for People of Determination, and for his participation for the seventh time in a row as a referee at the Paralympic Games.

Abdulaziz Muhammad Al-Yasi (Al-Anbari) for the successes achieved by the Sharjah Club under his leadership for the first time in its history. Sharjah Club won the Arab Gulf Football League title in the 2018/2019 season for the first time in the history of club since the start of the Professional League. It also won the Arabian Gulf Super Cup in 2019. Abdulaziz Muhammad Al-Yasi was named the best coach in the AFC Champions League for the 2018-2019 season.

Abdul Hamid Ibrahim Al Hosani, a role model for basketball coaches in the UAE, has achieved 58 titles so far in his career at local, Gulf, Arab and continental levels. In 2001, he was crowned as the best coach in Asia. He is the first Emirati coach to succeed in guiding a team to the podium at the continental level. He also took over the technical leadership of national teams in the UAE and Bahrain.

The UAE National Endurance Team, for winning the gold medal in the 120-km endurance races at the World Championships for Youth and Juniors held in Italy.

Zayed Higher Organisation for People of Determination, for the success and excellence in organising the 2021 Paralympic Shooting World Cup for the fifth time in a row.

The Award was given to four champions who excelled in the Tokyo Olympics:

Feryal Ashraf Abdel Aziz (Egypt) for winning a historic gold medal in karate at the Olympic Games in Tokyo 2020, which is the first Olympic gold medal for Arabs in karate.

Ahmed Ayoub Hafnaoui (Tunisia) for winning the gold medal in swimming at the Olympic Games in Tokyo 2020, the first Arab Olympic medal in swimming in the 400m freestyle competition.

Soufiane El Bakkali (Morocco) for winning the gold in the 3000m steeplechase at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, becoming the first Arab athlete to win an Olympic gold in the 3000m steeplechase.

Tarek Ali Hamdi (Saudi Arabia) for winning the silver medal in Karate at the Olympic Games in Tokyo 2020.

Aya Medany (Egypt) for being the first Arab and African to be elected as the President of the Players Committee and a member of the Executive Office of the International Modern Pentathlon Federation.

Zitouni Metyout (Morocco) for being the first international Karate referee to officiate 4 finals in the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, in addition to receiving the best African Continental Karate referee and the Arab Excellence Award in Arbitration 2021.

The Algerian national football team for winning the 2019 African Nations Cup in Egypt and continuing to shine by breaking the African record of matches without defeat and winning the award for the best African team, as well as for not losing in 33 games in a row.

Al-Ahly Club for Physical Sports – Egypt (Al-Ahly Club Economic Group – Self-financing), for being a distinguished initiative that brought together several aspects of innovation, foresight for the future, and access to best practices in institutional work. The initiative set an example for dealing with the pandemic, and demonstrated excellent results in institutional work. The impact exerted by the financial, human and knowledge initiative will continue for several years to come.

The International Handball Federation (based in Switzerland) for their success and excellence in organising the World Handball Championship that was held in Egypt overcoming the global repercussions of the pandemic, by following an innovative approach to developing and implementing protocols to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and ensuring the health and safety of all participants. With more than 5,000 participants, a "medical bubble" was successfully implemented. The event earned praise from the International Olympic Committee for the organisational model and the precautionary measures followed during the tournament.

The Award is given to a local junior athlete who has achieved outstanding success in the sports field:

Six male and female junior athletes are contesting for the Award in this category. The award will be decided through votes received via the Dubai Sports Channel, website and smart application. The shortlist of athletes contesting for the award include:

Mohammed Saeed Binham Al Ameri, for obtaining first place three times in the International Championship for Endurance – Slovakia 2019 and ranking fourth in the world in the adult riders category.

Saif Jasem Al Mansoori for winning the gold medal in the World Junior Championships (under 16 years) in Romania for 2019 and the silver medal in the World Jiu-Jitsu Championship for juniors category – 2019.

Alyaziah Tariq Abdulsalam for winning the silver medal in the International Gymnastics Championships, which was held in Hungary.

Rahma Khalfan Al Murshidi, for winning the silver medal in the Asian Junior and Junior Boxing Championship, which was held in the UAE.

Salwa Ahmed Al Mansoori, for winning the bronze medal in the Asian Karate Championship for juniors – youth under 21 years old – in Malaysia.

Yousuf Rashed Al Matrooshi, for winning four gold medals in the Gulf Swimming Championships held in Kuwait and Qatar, in addition to his participation in the Olympic Games – Tokyo 2020, as well as for his historic achievement in becoming the first Emirati to break the 50-second barrier in the 100-metre swimming race .

The Athlete Who Accomplished an Achievement Despite Difficult Challenges Award (People of Determination Category)

Walid Katila (Tunisia) for winning two gold medals at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games in the 100 and 800 metres wheelchair races and breaking the Paralympic record.

Garrah Nassar Tnaiash (Iraq) for winning the silver medal at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games under difficult conditions and challenges.

The Athlete Who Accomplished an Outstanding Achievement Award

Maan Abdel Moeen Asaad (Syria) for winning a bronze medal in the weightlifting competition at the Olympic Games in Tokyo 2020.

Zayed Abdulnaser Al Katheeri (UAE) for winning three gold medals in international jiu jitsu championships.

Year of the 50th Commemorative Silver Coin and Stamp

Within the framework of the UAE’s Golden Jubilee Celebrations and to mark its Year of the 50th, as well as the success of the first 10 editions of the Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Creative Sports Award, His Highness Sheikh Mansoor bin Mohammed unveiled an AED50 silver coin, issued by the Award in cooperation with the Central Bank.

His Highness also revealed a commemorative stamp issued by the Award in cooperation with Emirates Post, bearing the image of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum and the award's logo.

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