U-16 winners pose for a picture with Sheikh Saeed Bin Maktoum Bin Juma Al Maktoum, UAEPA President, and other dignitaries during the presentation ceremony.
Gulf Today, Staff Reporter
The UAE Padel Association (UAEPA), which governs the sport of padel across the UAE, has revealed the opening event of this year’s inaugural Mashreq Padel Tour – the country’s first dedicated community tournament series for amateurs – welcomed “exceptional turnout and quality”.
Held at World Padel Academy in Dubai from February 17-19, the opening event of the eight-leg Tour got underway with three competitions: UAEPA 100 (Open), UAEPA 10 (Men’s), and Under-16 (Boys).
With the top-ranking UAEPA 100 competition boasting prizes of Dhs12,000, Dhs6,000 and Dhs4,000 for first, second and third place teams, respectively, Sergio Icardo and Javier Lopez took top spot with a 6-3, 6-3 victory over Francisco Rodriquez and Jordi Cassanova in the final.
In the UAEPA 10 event, which boasts prizes of Dhs4,000, Dhs3,000 and Dhs2,000 for teams finishing first-to-third, Ranjan Pradeep and Victor Arruiz sealed top spot after a 6-3, 6-2 final win over Rashid Alrais and Omar Alabbar.
And in the Under-16 competition final, Mahmood Alattar and Mohammed Sayed Alhashimi took home first-place honours with a 4-6, 6-3, 6-2 triumph over Hamdan Abdalla and Humaid Alkokhardi.
“What we have seen at World Padel Academy this weekend exceeded our expectations. The exceptional turnout and quality of players across all competition categories underlines the significance of the Mashreq Padel Tour – it has arrived at precisely the right time to leverage the sport’s meteoric growth across the UAE. This exciting nationwide Tour will enrich the Padel community, improve tournament standards, and develop our players’ competitive experiences,” said Sheikh Saeed Bin Maktoum Bin Juma Al Maktoum, UAEPA President.
Commenting on the Tour’s inaugural tournaments, Ahmed Abdelaal, Group Chief Executive Officer, Mashreq, added: “We congratulate all the players and winners of the inaugural Mashreq Padel Tour event at World Padel Academy. As part of our commitment to supporting the growth and development of sports in the UAE, we are excited to see the Tour roll-out across the country in coming months, with amateur players showcasing their skills and competing for substantial prize purses. The era of Padel is only beginning in the Emirates.”
Conceived to increase adoption of the world’s fastest growing sport across all nationalities, age groups, genders, and abilities, the Mashreq Padel Tour will feature 20 tournaments in various categories played at six padel clubs in Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Sharjah, and Ajman between February and December. The Tour’s debut season carries a season prize purse of Dhs 350,000.
The Tour now moves to NAS Sports Complex, where five tournaments will be contested from March 23 to April 4 in what is the biggest round of the inaugural season.
The NAS Sports Complex tournaments include UAEPA 100 (Open), UAEPA 10 (Men’s), UAEPA 10 (Women’s), the hotly anticipated UAEPAE&E (Men’s), which must feature two-player teams comprising an Emirati and an expatriate, and Under-16 (Boy’s).