In a major step forward for badminton in the UAE, a governing body has been founded to oversee the ongoing development of one of the most popular and rapidly growing sports in the region.
The formation of the governing body, facilitated by Falcon and Associates, was announced by His Excellency Saeed Hareb, Secretary General of Dubai Sports Council, and His Excellency Dawood Al Hajri, President of the UAE Table Tennis Association, with the Badminton World Federation President Poul-Erik Høyer witnessing this important event.
Sitting alongside the UAE Table Tennis Association it will be known as the UAE Table Tennis and Badminton Association. The joint organisation will share resources, which will enhance the governance, administration, grassroots development and event delivery for both sports.
Commenting on the announcement, His Excellency Saeed Hareb, who is also Chairman of the BWF Dubai World Superseries Finals Organising Committee, said: “The formation of the UAE Badminton and Table Tennis Association is a fantastic milestone for the growth and development of the sport. The creation of this national association will no doubt increase participation in the UAE and further enhance the governance, development and administration structures currently in place. This is certainly an exciting time for badminton in the UAE and Dubai Sports Council looks forward to working very closely with the UAE Table Tennis and Badminton Association to promote badminton to an ever wider audience.”
It was also announced today that Dawood Al Hajri will assume the role of President of the Association, with Hassan Al-Zarouni appointed as Secretary General, Abdulrahman Al-Menhali as Treasurer and Ghazi Al Madani as a board member.
Al Hajri said: “The growth trajectory of badminton over the past two years has been nothing short of remarkable since the Shuttle Time Dubai programme was introduced as part of the agreement to host the BWF World Superseries Finals in Dubai. The association will further promote the growth of the sport in the region by developing a strategic and coordinated approach to the long-term development and sustainability of badminton in the UAE.”
Høyer said: “Through our association with Dubai Sports Council, the Badminton World Federation has enjoyed a great relationship with the UAE for over two years now and it’s incredible to think that within this short space of time, a national governing body has been set up. The UAE sporting community should be commended for the pace at which it has helped develop the sport in this part of the world and we are delighted to see this progress.
“The formation of this association is reflective of the UAE’s commitment to promoting grassroots participation and extending the benefits of playing badminton across the country. We at BWF look forward, in the near future, to the UAE governing body taking the next step and becoming a member of the Badminton World Federation. We will be happy to welcome the UAE into the international badminton family.”