United Arab Emirates - April 19, 2021: Sheikh Saeed Bin Maktoum Bin Juma Al Maktoum and Abdulrazak Ahmed will face Luis Cobo and Salvador Medina for a place in the semi-final of the NAS Padel Championship's Bronze Category for Men after battling to a grueling three-set win over Butii Al Suwaidi and Mohammed Al Shamsi to reach the last eight on Sunday night.
Sheikh Saeed, who is President of UAE Padel Association, and Ahmed took the opening set, but Al Suwaidi and Al Shamsi bounced back to force the tie into a deciding third-set where the “Uncle Saeed” team prevailed for a 6-4, 3-6, 7-5 win.
In the other Men's Bronze Category match of the night, Farhan Hudda and Humaid Ghanem Al Hajeri defeated Jean Christophe Viollet and Philip Dowsett 6-3, 6-3 to set up a quarterfinal clash with Khalid Al Kamali and Abdulla Al Qasim.
The other Men's Bronze Category quarterfinals will pit Ali Mohammed Ahlli and Hamad Ismail Ahli against Jordi Perpina and Ignacio Barroso, while Omar Ibrahim and Rashid Adel Ahli will take on Thomas Benaroya and Hazem Shish.
“This year, the competition has been really tough in the NAS Padel Championship,” said Al Hajeri. “I was not expecting it. We have seen some really close matches in the opening round itself and that shows the quality of players this tournament attracts.
“This is a really good tournament for us because we have many good players from different nationalities like France and Spain participating, and playing against them helps Emirati players develop their game and gain experience.
“Personally, I am very happy with our performance as a team in the opening match and I am looking forward to going all the way.”
In the Golden Category matches on Sunday night, Martin Noschese and Guillermo Villafane defeated Salem Al Houli and Mohammed Asif 6-3, 6-2 to book their place in the semi-finals of the competition, while Emilio Misas and Masson Xavier cruised to a 6-2, 6-1 win over the father-son duo of Matthew McFarlane and Dean McFarlane in the other Golden Category quarterfinal of the night.
The other quarterfinals of the Golden Category are scheduled for Tuesday night, where Javier Lopez Garcia and Alexander Farquharson will take on Marc Ruiviejo Cirera and Victor Arruiz, and Saeed Al Marri and Claudio Bobadilla will meet Cristian Donnet and Andre Delmar.
“We had a tough match, we won and we are now excited about playing the semi-final,” said Misas. “We have been preparing to play against good teams here and we expected tough matches. So we are happy to get through and we are now looking forward to doing our best to win the next round.”
Sunday night also featured two Women's Bronze Category quarterfinal matches where Josipa Bek and Selma Babic beat Filipa Firmino and Maria Rodrigues 6-0, 6-0, and Jessica Palma and Luli Guerrero defeated Dyana Kdsi and Fatma Al Mudharreb 6-0, 6-1.
The other semi-finals of the Women's Bronze Category will feature Jessica Palma and Luli Guerrero against Josipa Bek and Selma Babic (Tuesday night), and Karina Lozova and Alessa Belbes vs Hafsah Sani and Khadeejah Sani.
Organised by Dubai Sports Council, the NAS Sports Tournament has been one of the top sporting attractions during the Holy Month of Ramadan since 2013, and the eighth season of the Tournament features competitions in two others sports besides padel - running and cycling. All three events are being organized in compliance with all COVID-19 precautionary measures and protocols, as well as other guidelines issued by relevant authorities.
The NAS Padel Championship, which kicked off the eighth season of the NAS Sports Tournament on April 14, will continue until April 27, while the NAS Run will take place across two nights with the 10km Race scheduled for Wednesday, April 28, and the 5km for Thursday, April 29, while the 75km NAS Cycling Championships will take place across three nights from April 22 to 24.
Free COVID-19 Tests
The organisers will be conducting free COVID-19 PCR test for all NAS Cycling participants at Al Wasl Club on April 20 and 21, between 11am and 5pm. The chest and chip numbers will be distributed at the same time.
The COVID-19 PCR test for all NAS Run participants will also take place at Al Wasl Club on April 26 and 27, between 11am and 5pm. The chest and chip numbers will be distributed at the same time, and any participant testing positive for COVID-19 will need to make sure he or she follows the directives of concerned authorities on positive tests.
Dubai Police, Roads and Transport Authority of Dubai, Dubai Municipality and Dubai Corporation for Ambulance Services are the strategic partners for this year's Nad Al Sheba Sports Tournament, while Dubai Duty Free, Pocari Sweat and Tecnotree have signed up as sponsors for the 8th season of the Tournament, which is one of the biggest events of its kind in terms of participation and prize money.