Sheikh Ahmed bin Hamdan bin Mohammed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE Sailing and Rowing Federation, affirmed that the UAE, with the support and sponsorship of its leadership, is establishing its vital role in various fields, looking ahead to the future, building capacities, and preparing empowered young generations to represent the country in the best possible way in local, regional and international championships.

In a statement to the Emirates News Agency (WAM), he explained that the federation's strategy aims to qualify champions according to the best global practices to raise the country's flag at the Paris 2024 Olympics through competitions and qualifying rounds in the upcoming period, especially as the start of the current season has seen commendable results for Emirati clubs and champions at international and local championships, whether in sailing or modern rowing, through winning gold, silver and bronze medals.

“We are proud of the achievements and positive results of the UAE's champions, and the UAE Sailing and Rowing Federation supports them in achieving remarkable accomplishments. We wish them success in local and international championships, and we hope to see them at the Paris 2024 Olympic Games,” Sheikh Ahmed said.

“We strive to prepare future generations and provide them with the best and latest equipment to participate in the qualifying rounds for the Olympics, to raise the UAE's flag high on the global stage. We also stress the importance of cooperation with external federations in the Gulf region and the Middle East, exchanging experiences for development in various fields,” he added.

He then highlighted the UAE’s keenness to host rowing and sailing competitions, including championships and qualifiers, noting that the country is being selected as a destination to host such events, predominantly Asian and international tournaments, and the appropriate timeframes are being allocated for hosting these events, and preparations are underway for their participants.

Sheikh Ahmed explained that the UAE is a global hub for hosting championships and sporting events due to the availability of world-class sports facilities throughout the country, sustainable infrastructure, and services in line with the best practices, which are due to the support of the country’s leadership for the ambitions and aspirations of the nation's citizens.

He then discussed the success of the 2023 Wing Foil Racing World Cup, held for the first time in the UAE as part of the 14th edition of the Al Dhafra Festival. Its significant impact encouraged clubs to adopt the new sport and train athletes to prepare a skilled and professional generation of youth to represent the country in local, regional and international championships, enhancing its stature in the sporting arena.

Sheikh Ahmed commended the significant and positive role of parents in instilling the values of competition in their children, urging them to engage in sports of all types to represent the country in international events. “In rowing and modern sailing, we greatly appreciate the importance and value of this significant effort from parents, and our role aligns perfectly with the efforts of families, which contribute significantly to talent development,” he said.

Regarding the importance of schools in discovering talents and the recent launch of school sports, he added, “We have exceptional cooperation with universities, schools and various government departments. We may discover the best champions in schools, which is crucial for a strong start. Sports clubs across the UAE have opened their doors to attract talented students, and our focus is on establishing a strong foundation, as this represents a powerful beginning for their professional journeys.”

“This step foresees the future by discovering talents and developing their abilities from an early age as students in schools. It encourages them to engage in sports at different stages of their lives, to build innovative and creative generations that can contribute to the UAE's leadership and global competitiveness in various fields,” he further added.

He then explained that the federation encourages the practice of all types of sailing and modern rowing sports, with the support of the UAE’s leadership, while pointing out an increase in the number of participants in these sports, which causes optimism for the future. “I am keen to visit maritime clubs in the UAE and attend championships, and there is a plan to establish maritime clubs in new areas, such as Al Marfa and Dalma, in addition to upgrading the maritime club in Fujairah. These steps promote the spread of these sports across the country,” he further said.

Sheikh Ahmed congratulated His Highness Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Vice President, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of the Presidential Court, on the occasion of Manchester City Football Club's victory in the English Premier League for the third consecutive season.

The vision and strategy of His Highness Sheikh Mansour ingrained a future-oriented and sustainable management approach since 2008, when the club's ownership was transferred to him. Through his successful management and visionary outlook towards a bright future, Manchester City has achieved significant global progress in its history and remarkable accomplishments, becoming one of the strongest and best football clubs in the world, with victories and achievements that reflect inspiring developmental plans, he added.

“We congratulate Manchester City Football Club on winning the English Premier League title for the third consecutive season. This achievement translates to the leadership's vision that seeks excellence and commitment to success. Our sincere congratulations to the coaching staff, management, players and fans, as well as everyone who has worked to turn this vision into an honourable reality. We hope that the victories continue with FA Cup and UEFA Champions League titles, fulfilling the dream of the historic treble,” he said in conclusion.