Benouzeh wins Men’s Open title at NAS Cycling Championship; UAE storm into Gulf Padel Cup semis

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Hisham Benouzeh wins Men’s Open category race at the 77 km Nad Al Sheba Cycling Championship on Friday.

Gulf Today, Staff Reporter

Morocco’s Hisham Benouzeh, representing Al Shafar Jumeirah Cycling team, emerged victorious in the thrilling Men’s Open category race at the 77 km Nad Al Sheba Cycling Championship on Friday.

Held under the patronage of Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of the Council Executive Director of the Emirate of Dubai, and organised by the Dubai Sports Council, the NAS Sports Tournament has been one of the top sporting attractions during the Holy Month of Ramadan since 2013.

One of the highlights of the ninth season of the Nad Al Sheba Sports Tournament, the event attracted top cyclists.

Saeed Hareb, Secretary General of Dubai Sports Council and Chairman of Nad Al Sheba Sports Tournament’s Organizing Committee, flagged off the race in the presence of Nasser Aman Al Rahma, Assistant Secretary General of Dubai Sports Council, Nayef Abdulaziz Jikha, Assistant Secretary-General of the UAE Cycling Federation, and a number of dignitaries.

It was a battle between Benouzeh and Algeria’s cyclist, Abderrahmane Mansouri, during the race. They both overtook each other and exchanged leads, but finally Benouzeh took the victory after finishing just a few seconds ahead of Mansouri in a nail-biting clash.

The Moroccan topped the leaderboard after finishing the race with a time of 1:28:23.07 hours. Mansouri took the second spot after finishing in 1:28:25.34. Another cyclist from the Al Shafar Jumeirah team, Anas Abdia, settled for third spot with a time of 1:28:25.48.

In the senior citizens and residents category for men, the UAE’s Khaled Nasser Al Suwaidi won first place after finishing the race in 0:39:23.65, followed by Algeria’s Abdelkader Rahmani in second place after finishing in 0:39:23.78, and Andre Figuein finishing third in 0:39:23.96.

In the women’s senior and resident category, America’s Natis Linton won first place after finishing in 0:47:21.03, followed by the Netherlands’ Johanna H. Opecn in second place with a time of 1:33:02.40. Maria Corazon Assis from the Philippines took third spot with a time of 1:41:59.13.

In the People of Determination Road Bikes category race, the UAE’s Abdullah Salem Al Balushi won first place after finishing the race in a time of 0:22:12.71 minutes. He was followed by Emirati Dhiab Jassim Al Muhairi in second place after finishing the race in a time of 0:22:71.12. Completing a clean sweep for the UAE, Ahmed Mohammed Al Badawi finished third with a time of 0:22:13.08.

NAS-tournament-1-750x450Players in action during a Gulf Padel Cup match at Nad Al Sheba Sports Complex.

In the People of Determination’s hand bike category race, Emirati Ayed Ali Al Ahbabi won first place after finishing the race in a time of 0:27:18.93. Another Emirati, Badr Abbas, took the second spot with a time of 0:27:19.18, while Abdullah Younis Abdullah settled for third in 0:27:21.15.

In a race for the visually impaired, the UAE’s Abdullah Abdul Rahman won first place with a time of 0:45:11.57 minutes, followed by Emirati Abdul Rahman Ahmed in second place with a time of 0:45:11.88 minutes. Mohammed Saeed Al Naqbi came in third place, clocking a time of 0:52:39.98.

Meanwhile, the UAE defeated Kuwait 3-0 to advance to the semi-finals of the Gulf Padel Cup.

Mohammed Al Janahi and Abdulla Al Abdulla notched a straight set win over Ali Hayat and Dawood Hashem, a feat matched by Omar Bahrouzyan and Abdulla Ahli against Abdulrehman Al Awadhi and Mihammed Abdal.

In another match, Qatar defeated Bahrain 3-0. The organising committee of the Nad Al Sheba Sports Tournament has added a Gulf Padel Cup — a GCC Men’s Team Championship — to this year’s event for the first time.

The Nad Al Sheba Sports Tournament for this year features competition in eight different sports, including volleyball, padel, wheelchair basketball, running, cycling, archery, Spartan Nas Night Race and jiu-jitsu.

 

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