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Sports | ThisWeek Middle East

Category: Sports

Runners brave cold and snow for North Pole marathon

April 11 – Wrapped warmly against the cold, a group of runners set off for the barren white landscape for one very cool race – the North Pole Marathon. Some 50 running enthusiasts from around the world braved harsh conditions for Saturday’s 42.2-km (26.2 miles) race on the frozen ice of the Arctic Ocean, staged at the Barneo Ice Camp. Wearing balaclavas, goggles, gloves and layers of thermal clothing, participants had to complete 12 laps of a course lined with markers. A refreshment tent was on hand for those needing hot drinks, snacks and to warm up. As well...

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UAE coach Ali quits after Australia defeat

By Nick Mulvenney SYDNEY, March 28 – United Arab Emirates coach Mahdi Ali resigned on Tuesday after a loss to Australia dealt an all but fatal blow to the country’s chances of reaching next year’s World Cup in Russia. Ali, who led the UAE to a third-place finish at the Asian Cup in 2015, called time on a highly successful stint in charge of his country in the wake of the 2-0 defeat by the Socceroos in Group B of Asian qualifying. The loss left the Emiratis, who had started their campaign with a stunning victory away to Japan,...

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After bombs, Pakistan tightens security for rare major cricket match

By Mubasher Bukhari LAHORE, Pakistan, March 5 – Pakistan tightened security in the city of Lahore ahead of a hugely anticipated final of its domestic cricket league on Sunday, pushing ahead with a rare high-profile match despite a recent spike in Islamist violence. The government had wavered momentarily on whether to host the Pakistan Super League (PSL) final after a series of militant attacks killed more than 130 people last month, including a suicide bombing in Lahore in which at least 13 people died. Pakistan has only hosted one international series since militants attacked a bus carrying the Sri...

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British Olympic Champion Mo Farah’s coach accused of using prohibited drug infusions

Feb 25 – Britain’s Olympic champion Mo Farah’s coach has been accused of using prohibited drug infusions to improve the performance of his runners, the Sunday Times reported citing a leaked United States Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) report. The newspaper said the 2016 report also accused coach Alberto Salazar of abusing prescription medicines for his athletes at the Nike training centre in Oregon. Attempts by Reuters to reach Salazar for comment were unsuccessful. Salazar issued a lengthy and detailed denial of similar allegations in 2015. The Sunday Times said the report had been leaked by the ‘Fancy Bears’ hacking group...

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World Champion Manny Pacquiao to fight Britain’s Amir Khan in ‘super fight’

Feb 26 – Multiple world champion Manny Pacquiao has agreed to fight Britain’s Olympic silver medallist Amir Khan on April 23, both boxers said on Sunday. The 38-year-old Pacquiao had said four days ago that he and Khan’s management were in discussions for the fight, despite an earlier announcement the Filipino’s next bout would be against Australia’s Jeff Horn in Brisbane. Pacquiao, however, had said that Horn was one of many possible opponents. “Negotiations between team Pacquiao and team Khan have come to terms for the April 23 bout as this is what the fans wanted,” Pacquiao tweeted. The...

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Women in sports ad strikes nerve in Arab world

DUBAI, Feb 23 – An online commercial released by Nike this week showing Arab women fencing, boxing and spinning on ice-skates has stirred controversy over its attempt to smash stereotypes about women leading home-bound lives in the conservative region. It begins with a woman nervously peering out of her doorway and adjusting her veil before going for a run in the street, while a female voice narrates in a Saudi dialect: “What will they say about you? Maybe they’ll say you exceeded all expectations.” Within 48 hours the video was shared 75,000 times on Twitter and viewed almost 400,000...

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Black footballer Everton Luiz reduced to tears after Serbian fans hurl racist insults during match

Partizan Belgrade midfielder Everton Luiz was reduced to tears after Serbian soccer fans repeatedly chanted racist insults during his team’s victory over Rad in the Serbian league. The Brazilian footballer, who joined Partizan last year, played through monkey chants and other abuse, including a racist banner in the stands where Rad fans were standing. The banner was removed after intervention from the referee. There were scuffles between the players after the match on Sunday, when Partizan won 1-0, after Everton Luiz showed the middle finger to the Rad supporters. Wiping away tears, Everton Luiz said he “faced racist abuse...

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Egypt’s top court upholds 10 death sentences over football violence

CAIRO, Feb 20 – Egypt’s top court upheld death sentences for 10 men on Monday for their part in Egypt’s worst violence at a football stadium, in which more than 70 fans were killed in February 2012. Many of the dead were crushed when panicked fans tried to escape from the Port Said stadium after a post-match pitch invasion by supporters of the local side al-Masry. Others fell or were thrown from terraces, witnesses said at the time. The verdict from the Court of Cassation, which also upheld a lower court’s sentencing of 10 men to 15 years in...

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VIDEO: Now, You Can Run with Olympic gold medalist Sir Mo Farah Too

People across the world will be given the opportunity to go on a 360-degree virtual running tour of Dubai, with none other than Olympic gold-winning champion, Mo Farah, as their tour guide. In a video posted online, Dubai Corporation for Tourism and Commerce Marketing (Dubai Tourism) posted a video online, accompanied with a caption that read: “Mo Farah, Britain’s double Olympic distance running champion, traverses Dubai’s unique landscape with a message for his fans that inspires him to push on: Never stop, always move forward. Using the latest 360-degree Nokia OZO camera, viewers will be able to not only...

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First Muslim American Fencer and Olympic Medalist Ibtihaj Muhammad Detained At Customs

Fencer Ibtihaj Muhammad, the first female Muslim American to win a medal for the United States in the Olympics, said Tuesday she was recently detained at U.S. Customs for two hours without explanation. Muhammad, who is a native of Maplewood, New Jersey, said she didn’t know if she was held as a result of the Trump administration’s travel ban but is sure the move was a result of her ethnicity. “I don’t know why,” she told the web site Popsugar during a speaking engagement at the MAKERS Conference in Rancho Palos Verdes, Calif. “I can’t tell you why it...

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