The World Games will hold across some of the UAE’s most iconic and world-class sporting venues/Prime Minister Imran Khan.
Below is a breakdown of the 11 venues across Abu Dhabi and Dubai with details of which sports will be held in each venue.
ABU DHABI: ADNEC
Basketball o Table Tennis Volleyball o Artistic Gymnastics Rhythmic Gymnastics o Badminton Powerlifting o Bocce Judo o Handball
Zayed Sports City
o Tennis Stadium § Tennis
Zayed Sports City Stadium
§ Football 7s Football 11s § Fusball o Khalifa Bowling Center § Bowling
Abu Dhabi Sailing & Yacht Club
o Kayaking o Sailing
Yas Marina Circuit
o Triathlon o Cycling
Yas Links Abu Dhabi
o Golf Al Forsan Resort o Equestrian Corniche Beach o Beach Volleyball
DUBAI: Hamdan Sports Complex
o Swimming – Open Water Swimming will be held at La Mer
Dubai Police Club Stadium
o Athletics – the Half Marathon will be held at Al Hudariyat Island in Abu Dhabi
Meet the Determined:
‘Meet the Determined’ is our message to the world, inviting audiences to attend or watch the Games, whilst celebrating the courage and talent of Special Olympics athletes.
The campaign highlights the extraordinary talent of participating Special Olympics athletes.
The athletes participating in the campaign will give a voice to People of Determination in the UAE and around the world.
‘Meet the Determined’ celebrates the abilities of People of Determination and aims to change perceptions of intellectual disabilities by highlighting the stories of courage and determination of Special Olympics athletes.
THE SPECIAL OLYMPICS UAE TEAM WILL HAVE THE LARGEST DELEGATION OF ATHLETES
The Special Olympics UAE team will feature the most number of athletes with 320 currently signed up to represent the UAE at the World Games.
The 320 athletes will compete in a range of sports, from individual events such as swimming and athletics, to unified team sports such as football and basketball where they will play alongside teammates without intellectual disabilities.
2019 will be the first time the UAE has competed in every single sport in a Special Olympics Games.
HAMAD AL SHEHI, SPECIAL OLYMPICS UAE FOOTBALL TEAM
A talented footballer who is thrilled to be representing the UAE at the World Games, Hamad Al Shehi features in a recent documentary about the power of determination and true sportsmanship.
Hamad’s coach, Omar, quickly spotted Hamad’s ability as a player and insisted on registering him with the team, including him in training sessions and eventually official games.
Omar has worked hard to support Hamad and to boost his natural footballing talent through a variety of exercises designed to increase his fitness and skills.
Hamad’s family has seen a huge change in his demeanor and personality, with the young player eager to tell his parents and anyone who will listen just how much he enjoys being part of a unified team and how happy he is to be playing alongside new friends.
His motivation, passion and desire to develop and learn as a player has impressed his coach who has seen the youngster, who plays in attack, blossom into a talented footballer who hopes to lead the UAE team to victory at the World Games in Abu Dhabi.
The swimmer won three medals at the 2018 Special Olympics USA in Seattle, including gold for an incredible performance in the 200m individual medley.
Now the 21-year-old from Illinois is hoping to add to her medal haul at Special Olympics World Games Abu Dhabi 2019.
Grace has been swimming since she was just five years old and competing in Special Olympics since 2017.
Taking part in Special Olympics competitions has helped Grace grow in confidence, much to the delight of her family and friends.
The young swimmer, who has autism, will take part in the freestyle relay and breast stroke in the swimming competitions, which will be held in Dubai, and can’t wait to get in the pool to take part in the World Games and to meet athletes from all over the globe.
Her older brother, Chris, says Special Olympics is a huge part of his sister’s life.
“When you have a sibling with a disability, a lot of the time they feel like they’re left out, they don’t always have the activities that typical kids have;
but when they come to Special Olympics everyone is the same, everyone is excited, everyone is cheering each other on,” he said.
With the whole world cheering her on in Abu Dhabi, she is aiming to achieve even greater success and maybe take home a medal or two.
KIERA BYLAND, SPECIAL OLYMPICS GREAT BRITAIN CYCLING TEAM
Sport means more to Kiera than just winning medals – it’s an opportunity to meet new people and make new friends.
Growing up, Kiera suffered at the hands of bullies who made her time at school an unpleasant and unsetting experience for her and her family.
The abuse, sadly, took its toll on the youngster’s physical and mental health.
Her determination not to let the bullies win led her to attend a community sports event where she discovered Special Olympics teams taking part in competitions in her local area.
Now an athlete leader for Special Olympics Great Britain, Kiera has regained her confidence through her passion for cycling as well as making scores of new friends along the way.
She is looking forward to Special Olympics World Games Abu Dhabi 2019, where she will saddle up alongside athletes from all over the world, to win medals and build new, long-lasting friendships.
…And Finally SPECIAL OLYMPICS ATHLETES TRAIN WITH TENNIS LEGEND KEVIN ANDERSON
Athletes from the UAE team competing in Special Olympics World Games Abu Dhabi were given the opportunity to train with tennis legend, Kevin Anderson, at the Mubadala World Tennis Championship in Abu Dhabi.
The athletes, who will be representing the UAE in tennis at the World Games in March, were put through their paces by Kevin Anderson and offered expert tips and advice for next year’s competition.
Prime Minister Imran Khan GET BEHIND SPECIAL OLYMPICS WORLD GAMES ABU DHABI 2019
Pakistan’s Prime Minister, Imran Khan, followed in the footsteps of UAE royalty, HH Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE’s Armed Forces and HH Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai, and has been spotted wearing the Special Olympics World Games Abu Dhabi 2019 wristband.
The Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan Prime Minister Imran Khan welcomed Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan in Islamabad for a short one-day trip and the two key figures posed together with the wristband.
Prime Minister Imran Khan posted the picture to his one million followers on his Instagram account and it quickly became a big hit with the image getting more than 45,000 likes.
It has also been widely shared by hundreds of social media users.
Global leaders expressing their support is a huge boost for the Special Olympics movement and is helping to set the standard for a more inclusive society. —- ABUDHABI2019