Karate 1 Youth League Fujairah attracts record breaking 2,024 athletes from 78 countries - GulfToday

Karate 1 Youth League Fujairah attracts record breaking 2,024 athletes from 78 countries


Rashid Abdul Majid Al Ali, Engineer Humaid Al Shamsi and Dr. Abdullah Al Badi during the press conference in Fujairah on Tuesday.

Gulf Today, Staff Reporter

With a record number of participants, the Karate 1 Youth League Fujairah will kick off on Feb.22. A total of 2024 athletes representing 78 countries will be competing in this action-packed weekend event, concluding on Feb.25.

What makes the Karate 1 Youth League season opener in Fujairah more competitive is that the championship serves as a qualifier for the 2026 Youth Olympics in Dakar, Senegal.

The Fujairah event is a strong testament to the growing popularity of the Karate 1 Youth League. Compared to last year's 1,000 competitors from 66 countries, this year's event boasts a whopping more than 2,000 athletes, marking a significant increase in both participation and global reach.

This surge in interest highlights the league's success in fostering young talent and showcasing the excitement of karate to a wider audience. It's shaping up to be an incredible season!

The details of the Karate 1 Youth League Fujairah were disclosed in a press conference held at the Bahar Hotel and Resort in the Emirate on Tuesday.

Besides representation from top athletes from across the globe, 108 players from the UAE are also in the fray, targeting a spot in the Youth Olympics.

The figures were announced in the media briefing attended by Rashid Abdul Majid Al Ali, Asian Karate Federation Vice-President and UAE Karate Federation Vice-President, Engineer Humaid Shamsi, Secretary-General of the UAE Karate Federation and Tournament Director, and Dr. Abdullah Al Badi, General Coordinator of the championship.

Ali extended his deepest gratitude to Sheikh Mohammed Bin Hamad Bin Mohammed Al Sharqi, Crown Prince of Fujairah, for his unwavering support.

He acknowledged that the event might not have come to fruition without the Fujairah Crown Prince’s support. He emphasized the dramatic surge in participants compared to the previous year, crediting it to the impeccable organization witnessed in the past edition. Furthermore, he recognized the invaluable contributions of the General Sports Authority, the UAE National Olympic Committee, and various government bodies in ensuring the event's grand presentation.

He emphasized the UAE's growing influence in karate globally, crediting Major General Nasser Abdul Razaq Al Razooqi, President of the UAE and Asian Karate Federations and Vice President of the World Karate Federation, for his efforts in elevating and developing karate across Asia and the world.

"Such tournaments serve as important tourist attractions for the emirate, aside from their technical benefits, and promoting them appropriately aligns with their objectives, Ali added.

He anticipated a successful second edition based on the significant number of participants, which may exceed 3,000 individuals, including players, coaches, and administrators.

Engineer Shamsi said: "The tournament will kick off at the Zayed Sports Complex, and at the same time, there are many people behind this success, starting with the number of volunteers, which reaches 700 people, who will play a major role in the success of the tournament. In addition, the number of participants reached 2024 because the tournament is a qualifier for the Youth Olympic Games to be held in the Senegalese capital, Dakar, in 2026. Fujairah will be the first event on the calendar, which is spread over a number of countries around the world."

"We are targeting a public attendance of more than 8,000 spectators. The planning and coordination for this matter have been well done through the great efforts of the members of the organizing committee. Such tournaments held on UAE soil, whether for adults or youth, have many benefits for our players, which have been reflected in their significant development at the regional and Arab levels."

Dr. Badi noted the increase in participating countries from 67 in the previous edition to 78 in the current one, signaling global interest and participation in the sport's future. He attributed the tournament's success to the impeccable organization in Fujairah and the support from Sheikh Mohammed bin Hamad Al Sharqi. He also mentioned the presence of distinguished sports figures from international and Asian federations.

He highlighted the societal engagement in this edition, coordinating with 86 schools and 14 colleges and universities in Fujairah for attendance and support throughout the tournament's four days.

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