Saudi Arabia’s Al-Hilal celebrate AFC Champions League win in Dubai

During the celebrations, an animation dedicated to Al-Hilal FC was displayed on Burj Khalifa. (Supplied)
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Updated 29 December 2019

Saudi Arabia’s Al-Hilal celebrate AFC Champions League win in Dubai

DUBAI: The Saudi football team Al-Hilal visited Dubai to celebrate their victory in the 38th Asian Football Confederation Champions League 2019. At the event, hosted by Emaar Properties, some of the team’s fans and the company’s signature Saudi customers were invited to attend and meet the footballers.
During the celebrations, an animation dedicated to Al-Hilal FC was displayed on Burj Khalifa.
Al-Hilal beat Japan’s Urawa Red Diamonds 3-0 in a two-leg match. The first match was played at the King Saud University Stadium in Saudi Arabia, and the second was hosted by Urawa Red Diamonds at the Saitama Stadium 2002.
“It was an indescribable feeling [to win the AFC Champions League]. We have tried to win this cup a few times. Thank God, with his blessings we won it this time,” Al-Hilal’s captain and left-winger Mohammad Al-Shalhoub said.
He said that Al-Hilal is preparing for the upcoming matches.
“We still have the League; the competition is tough there and it will not be easy but we will try to win it. The more advanced and important matches of the Kings Cup are going on now, we will do our best there,” Al-Shalhoub added.
Ahmad Thani Rashed Al-Matrooshi, the managing director of Emaar Properties, said they are proud of their partnership with the team and they are “look[ing] forward [to] celebrating Al-Hilal’s continued success in the future.” Emaar, a global property developer and provider of premium lifestyles, signed a 5-year strategic partnership agreement with Al-Hilal in June.
Other high-ranking officials from Al-Hilal and Emaar attending the event included the president of the Al-Hilal FC, Fahad Bin Saad bin Nafal, Al-Hilal board member Sultan bin Saeed, CEO of Al-Hilal Investment Co. Sultan Al-Sheikh, Emaar vice-chairman Jamal Majid bin Theniyah and CEO Amit Jain.


Amaala lift champion trophy in Saudi Arabia’s first-ever desert polo tournament

Updated 19 January 2020

Amaala lift champion trophy in Saudi Arabia’s first-ever desert polo tournament

  • Amaala earned the bragging rights as the 2020, and inaugural, AlUla Desert Polo champions

JEDDAH: Renowned Argentine polo player Nacho Figueras scored all his side’s goals as Amaala hammered out an emphatic 7-3 victory over host team AlUla to win the Kingdom’s first-ever desert polo tournament on Saturday at AlUla UNESCO heritage site.

Prince Abdul Aziz bin Turki bin Faisal, chairman of the General Sports Authority, presented the trophy to Amaala after the final.

The event forms part of Winter at Tantora festival, featuring international polo players, who had the experience of playing on compacted desert sand instead of grass amid the stunning surroundings at AlUla.

The Royal Commission of AlUla organized the three-day tournament in cooperation with the newly formed Saudi Polo Federation.

In winning the tournament, Amaala earned the bragging rights as the 2020, and inaugural, AlUla Desert Polo champions.

Players from all over the world took part, including team members from the world famous La Dolfina polo outfit from Argentina, including Adolfo Cambiaso, Pelon Stirling and Pablo Mac Donough.

In the match for third place, Al Nahla Bentley defeated Team Richard Mille 4-2 with Sheikha Alya Maktoum scoring a hat trick of goals.

Figueras said: “It’s an amazing place with an amazing history, an amazing heritage and an amazing first tournament for the Saudi Polo Federation. I’m very honored to be here and I’m delighted that we were able to win.

“This country is going through a transformation and there are amazing years to come.”

Mac Donough added: “For us it was a completely new place; polo-wise Saudi Arabia wasn’t something we were doing before. Having the chance to come to such an amazing country and having the chance to play a tournament and promote the sport, all this makes us feel very proud and we hope we can continue it.”

Saudi Polo Federation chairman, Amr F. Zedan, who played for Team Richard Mille during the tournament, said: “I see this event as a launching pad for the future. We have big plans for polo in Saudi Arabia that include the establishment of development programs and the construction of facilities to assist in building a polo infrastructure in The Kingdom.”

Amr Madani, CEO of the Royal Commission of AlUla, said: “Our tourism strategy for AlUla has been built around certain anchors — heritage, culture, nature and arts. Equestrianism has always been a key industry for us, and the surroundings here make AlUla one of the best locations to ride horses.”