The Supreme Organising Committee (SOC) of the Arab Women Sports Tournament (AWST) has travelled to Jordan as part of its ongoing campaign to promote the importance of the event for female athletes and highlight the vital support Arab women need to compete in a global arena.The visit to the capital city of Amman marks the latest in a series of international meetings with sporting dignitaries, which also includes high-level conferences in Morocco and Saudi Arabia. HE Nada Askar Al Naqbi, Director General of the Sharjah Women Sports Foundation (SWSF), Deputy Head of the SOC of AWST 2018 and Head of AWST’s Executive Committee, emphasised that the Emirate of Sharjah – the venue for AWST – is fully committed to raising the status of Arab women in sports and is on a mission to maintain and enhance that vision among its fellow Arab nations.The fourth edition of the tournament, taking place from February 2-12, 2018, will provide the athletes with a world-class competitive environment in nine sporting events that will not only nurture their capabilities, develop their talents and hone skills, but also provide the essential experience that will give them an advantage in international events.
Speaking at a press conference organised by the SOC in Amman, HE Nada Askar Al Naqbi stressed that the 11-day event, held under the patronage of Her Highness Sheikha Jawaher bint Mohammed Al Qasimi, the wife of His Highness the Ruler of Sharjah and Chairperson of the Supreme Council for Family Affairs (SCFA) and Chairperson of SWSF, has been a milestone in changing attitudes to women’s sports.“Through this prestigious competition, we have showcased the very best of Arab women in sport and enhanced their confidence and their ability to win regional and international tournaments. We look forward to once again to providing an even greater platform as the event gains in stature each year. The Jordanian sportswomen who have participated in the past have made an enormous contribution to its success and I have no doubt that their presence in the next event, just two months away, will have the same, if not greater impact.”
The press conference was attended by many senior Jordanian officials, CEOs and directors of sports institutions and clubs, as well as professional sportswomen, including; Mohammed Jamil Abdul Qadir, president of the Arab Union of Sports Press, Former Secretary-General of the Jordan Olympic Committee Lana Al Jaghbeer and the CEO of the 2018 Asian Women's Cup, Farah Al-Badarneh. The huge turnout of 80 media personnel and sports journalists from 40 media institution across Jordan also emphasised the kudos and importance of AWST to the wider Arab community.Al Naqbi said that the Kingdom of Jordan has been a pioneer in supporting women in sport, not only in terms of winning titles, cups and medals, but also in providing a healthy lifestyle and promoting a positive outlook on life.Al Naqbi expressed her thanks and appreciation to the Jordanian personalities, institutions and media for the cooperation and hospitality shown to the SOC during the visit and underscored that the committee will facilitate the participation of all Jordanian female athletes and clubs, as well as the management staff and media crew who will accompany them.
Aside from the press conference, the SOC explored potential collaboration with numerous sports organisations, clubs and authorities on projects to unite the efforts of supporting women’s sport in Jordan and the Arab world.It organised a series of high-level visits, headed by HE Nada Askar Al Naqbi, which included meetings with His Excellency Eng. Haditha Al Khreisha, Minister of Youth in Jordan, His Excellency Matar Saif Al Shamsi, UAE Ambassador to Jordan and His Excellency Nasser Majali,Secretary General of the Jordan Olympics Committee.The meetings, which were held separately, saw Al Naqbi presenting the latest insights and initiatives on the upcoming AWST, and its means to strengthen its position as the premier platform for female athletes across the Arab region. She also presented the level of collaboration and participation between AWST and Jordanian sports associations, who participated in AWST’s previous editions, highlighting the key role of Jordan as part of the tournament’s overall success. Al Naqbi was hailed for her efforts and the efforts of SWSF in empowering women in the field of sports, especially towards female athletes from Jordan, with the high-level executives being met with noting that the UAE and the Kingdom of Jordan enjoy one of the closest and most historic relations in the world, mapping out their plans to support AWST 2018 by increasing the number of female participants and sports associations from Jordan.Last April, the Union of Arab National Olympic Committees approved the SWSF, which was established in 2016, as the official curator of AWST’s fourth edition, featuring basketball, volleyball, table tennis, fencing, archery, shooting, athletics, karate and show-jumping.