UAE pledges to help in success of 2014 Incheon Asian Games

Sheikha Latifah bint Ahmed bin Juma Al Maktoum at the launch of the 2014 Incheon Asian Games roadshow in Dubai on Sunday. (SUPPLIED)

The UAE National Olympic Committee has pledged its support to the 2014 Incheon Asian Games Organizing Committee (IAGOC) to help make the 17th Asian Games one of the most successful yet. 

The partnership between the two nations was solidified at a road show event held on Sunday at Park Hyatt, Dubai, where Sheikha Latifah bint Ahmed bin Juma Al Maktoum was appointed as an official goodwill ambassador to the 2014 Incheon Asian Games. 

A silver medallist in Equestrian Jumping, Individual and Team Events at the 16th Asian Games 2010 in Guangzhou, Sheikha Latifah competed at the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games, following her successful results at the 7th Group of Equestrian (Jumping) Qualifying Event at Qatar in 2007. 

“I am delighted to have been appointed as a Goodwill Ambassador for the 2014 Incheon Asian Games.  I was lucky enough to represent my country at the 16th Asian Games in 2010 and bring home a silver medal, and I have seen first-hand the power that sport has in bringing together communities and cultures. I hope that in my role as Goodwill Ambassador I will inspire athletes from all over the UAE to come together and represent our nation at the greatest festival of sport in Asia,” she said.

The IAGOC showed its support for sports in the UAE by making a donation to the UAE Youth Sports Development Programme, the “School Olympics”, at the event.

The School Olympics is an initiative of the UAE NOC’s National Youth Sports Development Programme lead by Sheikh Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, and assisted by Mohammed Al Kamali, Secretary General of the UAE National Olympic Committee in association with the Ministry of Education, the General Authority of Youth and Sports Welfare and the Ministry of Health. 

Those attending the road show in Dubai included Song Young-Gil, Chairman of IAGOC Executive Board (Mayor of Incheon Metropolitan City) and other IAGOC officials, Yousuf Al Serkal, First Vice-President of UAE NOC, UAE sports and government figures and key members of the Korean community in the UAE.

The 2014 Incheon Asian Games will take place in Incheon, South Korea, from September 19 to October 4, 2014. 

This year the Organising Committee is embarking on a road show around six specially selected countries to promote the Games. 

The UAE is the second country the roadshow has visited, and has been selected by the IAGOC as a strategic location in the Middle East with strong interest and participation in international sports events. 

In May, the IAGOC road show made its first stop in Tashkent, Uzbekistan.

“It is a great pleasure to be selected as the destination for the IAGOC road show. We will continue to provide unsparing support to help successfully lead the 2014 Incheon Asian Games to become one of the most unforgettable international sports event ever,” said Yousuf Al Serkal.

“We appreciate the unfailing support the UAE NOC has given us to make this road show possible,” said Chairman Song.

“As Asia is currently taking a lead role on the global stage, I believe together we can take the Asian Games to be an international sporting festival of harmony and peace, providing all participants with a great opportunity to share their history, cultures, traditions, and religions with strong support from each Asian country,” he added.

During the road show in the UAE, the Incheon Metropolitan City Dance Theatre enthralled the audience by putting on a traditional Korean drum dance and hope performance for the success of 2014 Incheon Asian Games.

In addition to the 2014 Incheon Asian Games, IAGOC is also preparing for the 4th Asian Indoor & Martial Arts Games Incheon 2013 which will precede the 2014 Asian Games and be held from June 29 to July 6.

This event is aimed to encourage the development of indoor sports and serve as a comprehensive test for the 17th Asian Games.

Following on from the Road Show in the UAE, the IAGOC plans to visit four more Asian countries this year, including India, Singapore, Vietnam and China.

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