In the 2-12 February Arab Women’s Sports Tournament (AWST) in Sharjah, sports lovers from Egypt residing in the UAE and across the region have reason to celebrate as talented sportswomen representing renowned clubs in Egypt — Sporting Club of Alexandria, Shams Club and National Bank of Egypt — will be competing in the largest women’s sporting event in the Arab world, Inas Mazhar reports.
This is Egypt’s fifth participation in the event since the tournament was created in 2012. The Egyptians, who were victorious in the previous four editions they participated in, will be competing in four AWST disciplines: basketball, volleyball, fencing and karate.
Egypt plays a leading role in the Arab world in promoting women’s sports and was one of the region’s first countries to establish sports clubs for females. The representation of Egyptian sportswomen in AWST has always been outstanding, having won 28 medals competing in AWST’s previous editions. In the 2018 edition, six Egyptian clubs took home 13 medals.
“Egypt has always been superb in sports,” Nada Askar Al Naqbi, deputy head of AWST’s Supreme Organising Committee, head of its Executive Committee, and director general of Sharjah Women’s Sports (SWS), said. “It has a long history of brilliance and innovation in all sports, including women’s sports. The country’s dedication to enhancing the capabilities of women in sports is reflected in the nation’s unrivalled representation at AWST who play with utmost professionalism to defend their titles, inspiring their peers from other countries. We look forward to Egypt bringing a high level of excellence and sporting spirit to AWST 2020,” Al Naqbi said.
The fifth edition of AWST 2020 will see the participation of clubs from 16 Arab countries who will be battling it out in shooting, basketball, volleyball, table tennis, athletics, show jumping, fencing, archery and karate.
Held under the patronage of Sheikha Jawaher bint Mohamed Al Qasimi, wife of the ruler of Sharjah and chairperson of SWS, AWST is organised by SWS in partnership with the UAE Sports Council, Sharjah Sports Council and the Union of Arab National Olympic Committees.
Launched in 2012, the bi-yearly Olympics-themed women sports tournament hosts a number of women’s sports clubs from more than 15 Arab nations competing in nine sports: karate, basketball, volleyball, fencing, show jumping, shooting, archery, athletics and table tennis.
In 2018, AWST hosted 67 women’s sports clubs from 16 Arab nations who competed in nine games, and received media coverage from more than 380 outlets across the Arab region.
The fifth edition of the tournament will play a major role in building on the five-year success of the AWST brand, and supporting the growth and development of the regional sports industry and women’s sports initiatives.
*A version of this article appears in print in the 16 January 2020 edition of Al-Ahram Weekly