Gamers8 Fortnite players win $2m in prizes

Gamers8 Fortnite players win $2m in prizes
Malibuca, left, and EpikWhale celebrate winning Fortnite’s Standard Battle Royale at Gamers8 in Riyadh. (Gamers8)
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Updated 01 August 2022

Gamers8 Fortnite players win $2m in prizes

Gamers8 Fortnite players win $2m in prizes
  • Malibuca, from Nigma Galaxy, and EpikWhale, from TSM, claim Standard version crown to capture $250,000
  • Anas, from Guild Esports, and Pinq, from Tundra Esports, also win quarter million with Zero Build triumph

RIYADH: Gamers8 welcomed the world’s best Fortnite teams and players to Saudi Arabia over the weekend, with the elite competition concluding with a second winning pair on Sunday night.

With a $2 million prize pool up for grabs in the eagerly anticipated four-day Fortnite tournament at a purpose-built arena at Boulevard Riyadh City, Malibuca, from Nigma Galaxy, and EpikWhale, from TSM, claimed the Standard version crown. The 359 points racked up in Sunday’s final earned them the $250,000 top prize in that format, with Malibuca also taking home an extra $100,000 for being the MVP of the weekend.

The victors of the Zero Build tournament, who also collected $250,000 in winnings, were Anas, from Guild Esports, and Pinq, from Tundra Esports. They scored 320 points during their event, which ended on Friday night.

Malibuca said: “I am delighted with the win. I think I will be three times more confident in my tournaments online from now on because (I) was really nervous to play this tournament and a huge boost to win. I don’t know what I’m going to do with the money yet; I don’t have a lot of money and I’m saving, so winning it is very nice. I may look to buy a house.”

Partner EpikWhale added: “The win adds a lot of confidence to my game, especially playing at a LAN event with the best players from every region, Brazil, Asia, Middle East, Europe and North America. Winning at that just makes going back to playing only against Western players that much easier. The money’s really cool, but I am also just glad that I can do what I love and succeed in it.

“I want to thank the Saudi Esports Federation for hosting us. I never before thought I’d be in Saudi Arabia playing and my time here has been really memorable.”

Meanwhile Anas commented on his Zero Build win, saying: “We’re so happy with this achievement. The competition was top level, and we felt the pressure throughout both days, but we’re glad we managed to bring it home in the end. Pinq is the perfect partner and I’m so glad that we got to win this tournament together. I’d like to thank the Saudi Esports Federation for organizing such a great tournament, it’s our first time here in the Kingdom and we really loved it.”

Pinq said: “This winning feeling is so special, but what’s more special is playing against some of the best Fortnite players in the world and coming out on top. The second day was the toughest, but we did well in working together and staying calm until the end. The atmosphere was great, we could hear the fans cheering and supporting us even with our headsets on.”

Pinq also had a special message to Saudi youth who aspire to one day be in his position, commenting: “Keep practicing and developing your skills, it will eventually pay off and you’ll be where you want to be.”

Zero Build — where building is disabled in this mode, but the Overshield is enabled — took place on July 28 and 29 across 12 matches and involving 44 duos, and on a points-based system. Second place in the tournament went to Trippernn and Hellfire, from Manchester City Esports, who claimed $150,000. Malibuca, from Nigma Galaxy, and EpikWhale, from TSM, earned $100,000 after finishing third.

Duo Standard Battle Royale, using the standard set of rules, took place on July 30 and 31 — also involving 12 matches, with 44 duos — with second place going to Chapix and zAndy, from Saudi Arabian side Team Falcons, who earned $150,000. Setty and Kami, from Become Legends, claimed $100,000 after finishing third.

Faisal bin Homran, head of esports at the Saudi Esports Federation, said: “The Fortnite weekend at Gamers8 has been a special occasion for players and spectators alike, and fully demonstrates the level of elite, global gaming events that Saudi Arabia is capable of hosting.

“By having top tournaments such as Fortnite at Gamers8, we know we can truly inspire and empower more fans and players in the Kingdom and further afield. The success of the Fortnite tournament, which follows on from the popularity of Rocket League and the Dota 2 Riyadh Masters, makes us very proud and determined to continue delivering an incredible Gamers8 season.”


Ajax star Tadic robbed at home in Amsterdam: reports

Updated 5 sec ago

Ajax star Tadic robbed at home in Amsterdam: reports

Ajax star Tadic robbed at home in Amsterdam: reports
THE HAGUE: Top Ajax attacking midfielder Dusan Tadic was wounded when robbers ambushed him outside his Amsterdam home, Dutch news reports said on Wednesday.
The apparently targeted attack on the star Serbian player in late July was the latest in a spate of robberies on Dutch celebrities, national broadcaster NOS said.
Two men wearing motorbike helmets accosted Tadic as he stepped out of his car outside his home in the Dutch capital’s south two weeks ago, the daily tabloid De Telegraaf said.
“It seems they wanted to rob him of his valuable wrist-watch,” the paper said.
“After a short pursuit Tadic was involved in a scuffle in which he managed to open the visor of one of the helmets and hit the robber, the paper said.
Tadic then ran into a nearby cafe and called the police.
The robbers got away and no arrests have been made, the paper added.
A few days later the Ajax footballer was seen with plasters on his hand during a season opener against PSV, Amsterdam daily Het Parool reported.
The assault on Tadic is the latest in a spate of such attacks on celebrities and sports stars.
Last year former PSV attacker Eran Zahavi and his family were tied up and robbed of money and possessions.
Other targets included rappers Ali B and Lil Kleine as well as social media star Nikkie de Jager, who was tied up and beaten during a robbery at her home in Uden near Eindhoven two years ago.

Kingdom targets Riyadh 2034 Asian Games for athletic performance

Kingdom targets Riyadh 2034 Asian Games for athletic performance
Updated 10 August 2022

Kingdom targets Riyadh 2034 Asian Games for athletic performance

Kingdom targets Riyadh 2034 Asian Games for athletic performance
  • New Saudi Olympic Training Center CEO Matt Favier reveals the plan at Islamic Solidarity Games in Turkey

The Kingdom will bid to ensure athletes are prepared for top performances at the Riyadh 2034 Asian Games, according to the newly appointed chief of the Saudi Olympic Training Center.

Matt Favier, CEO of the SOTC, was speaking at the ongoing Islamic Solidarity Games taking place in Turkey. He also praised the organizers of the Konya event.

Matt Favier, the newly appointed CEO at the Saudi Olympic Training Center (SOTC). 

Favier, an Australian high-performance sports specialist, is part of the Saudi Arabian delegation participating in the 5th Islamic Solidarity Games involving 54 countries, which launched officially on Tuesday and will run until Aug. 18.

“The impact of Konya 2022 is huge, and it is always a great opportunity to allow the elite athlete to participate in such mega championships as this one,” he said.

“We are not in a hurry, we have time, and we care about the quality of developments, and one of the best ways to help our athletes grow is through meeting and competing against international athletes from around the world.”

Regarding the training center’s role, Favier said: “We have around 200 elite athletes representing 17 sports, and we aim to provide a complete environment that helps the athlete focus on practicing sports and reaching their goals.”

According to Favier, the training center’s elite program is an example of the implementation of the Kingdom’s Vision 2030. It shows the ambitions of the sports sector and the strong support received by athletes, clubs and federations from the Kingdom’s government and the Quality-of-Life Program, he added.

Favier is an administrator with over 25 years of experience across various sports. He recently acted as CEO of Hockey Australia, where he developed a national league.


Saudi athletes win silver in 100m and pole vault at Islamic Solidarity Games

Saudi athletes win silver in 100m and pole vault at Islamic Solidarity Games
Updated 10 August 2022

Saudi athletes win silver in 100m and pole vault at Islamic Solidarity Games

Saudi athletes win silver in 100m and pole vault at Islamic Solidarity Games
  • Abdullah Abkar and Hussain Al-Hizam were the Kingdom’s big winners on Tuesday

Saudi sprinter Abdullah Abkar on Tuesday won a silver medal in the 100 meters at the 5th Islamic Solidarity Games in Konya, Turkey.

Abkar finished second in the final with a time of 9.95 seconds, improving on his semifinal time of 9.96, which was the first time a Saudi had run a sub-10 second race at the Islamic Solidarity Games.

The podium finish is the fourth by a Saudi athlete in the men’s 100 meters in this competition, after Salem Al-Yami’s gold in 2005, and bronze for Jamal Al-Saffar and Fahad Al-Subaie in 2005 and 2013 respectively.

Hussain Al-Hizam claimed Saudi’s second medal of the day by grabbing silver in the pole vault competition with a height of 5.40 meters.

The mark is 15 centimeters below the height Al-Hizam managed when winning gold at the 2017 Islamic Solidarity Games in Baku.


Saudi delegation joins Turkey’s Erdogan to launch 5th Islamic Solidarity Games

Saudi delegation joins Turkey’s Erdogan to launch 5th Islamic Solidarity Games
Updated 10 August 2022

Saudi delegation joins Turkey’s Erdogan to launch 5th Islamic Solidarity Games

Saudi delegation joins Turkey’s Erdogan to launch 5th Islamic Solidarity Games
  • Official opening ceremony in Konya welcomes athletes from 54 countries

KONYA: Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Tuesday night officially opened the 2022 Islamic Solidarity Games in the presence of the President of the Islamic Solidarity Sports Federation Prince Abdulaziz bin Turki Al-Faisal.

The fifth edition of games will take place in Konya, Turkey, until Aug. 18.

The ceremony at Konya Metropolitan Municipality Stadium welcomed athletes from 54 countries in the presence of several Olympic federation leaders, including the head of the Saudi delegation and Vice President of the Saudi Olympic and Paralympic Committee (SOPC) Prince Fahd bin Jalawi.

Prince Abdulaziz, also SOPC president, said in his opening statement: “We meet today on a new date under one banner, permanent brotherhood and a great goal, for there is nothing more beautiful than peace and higher than Islam — Islam which, since its inception encouraged swimming, archery and horse riding, preceding humanity in promoting sports.”

He expressed his delight at the launch of the fifth Islamic Solidarity Games, in which more than 4,000 male and female athletes will compete.

Prince Abdulaziz thanked Erdogan, the government and the people of Turkey for hosting the event, adding: “You have all been nothing but supportive.

“The federation grants the new edition a certificate of success from its first moments.”


Manchester City’s youth Abu Dhabi Cup returns in 2023

Manchester City’s youth Abu Dhabi Cup returns in 2023
Updated 10 August 2022

Manchester City’s youth Abu Dhabi Cup returns in 2023

Manchester City’s youth Abu Dhabi Cup returns in 2023
  • Competition open to young male and female players from Feb. 18-19 at Zayed Sports City Stadium

ABU DHABI: The Manchester City Abu Dhabi Cup will return to the UAE capital in February 2023, for the first time since 2019, the organizers have announced.

The youth tournament caters for players of all abilities, with the aim of developing footballers in the region.

Launched in 2017, the youth tournament has over the years attracted international interest with the participation of 13 countries from four continents, over 1,750 players (including Manchester City academy footballers from the UK) and 4,000 spectators.

In 2018, the organizers also launched a new girls’ category, which will return for the upcoming 2023 edition.

The tournament will be held over the weekend of Feb. 18 and 19 at Zayed Sports City Stadium in Abu Dhabi, the largest multi-purpose venue in the UAE. Off the pitch and away from the action, families will be able to enjoy live entertainment and fun activities in the ‘City Village.’

Aref Hamad Al-Awani, general secretary of the Abu Dhabi Sports Council, said: “Abu Dhabi Sports Council is delighted to once again support the Manchester City Abu Dhabi Cup. Football tournaments in the capital city are essential to ensure the growth, further development and improvement of the football landscape in the UAE. We are very excited to see the Cup competition return in 2023 and are looking forward to welcoming teams from the region competing alongside youth Abu Dhabi football clubs.”

The age categories for the 2023 tournament will be under-8, under-10, under-12 and under-14 boys, and two categories for under-11 and under-14 girls.

Simon Hewitt, senior manager, Football Operations MENA - Football Education, said: “We can’t wait to see so many young footballers playing with a smile on their faces and having fun at the Manchester City Abu Dhabi Cup in February 2023. The tournament returns and promises to be a fantastic experience for all involved, from players to families and the coaches.”

“The tournament caters for all levels of abilities with day two ending in a selection of finals for the City Cup, City Plate, City Trophy and City Shield all up for grabs, with one lucky team winning an all-expenses paid trip to the City Football Academy in Manchester.”

Meanwhile Saleh Mohamed Saleh Al-Geziry, director general for tourism at the Department of Culture and Tourism - Abu Dhabi, said: “Inspiring the next generation of sports stars and sharing Abu Dhabi with the world are among the key goals of DCT Abu Dhabi, so we’re thrilled to support the Manchester City Abu Dhabi Cup and showcase our world-class sporting infrastructure and partnerships.”