Colin Wells, a former England international and UAE coach, is guiding the fortunes of young cricketers at the British School Al Khubairat in Abu Dhabi.
Keith Spencer, a US college basketball standout a few years ago, is training youngsters at the Wellington International School in Dubai.
Vikram Dutt, a one-time India Test hopeful, has raised a strong cricket team at the Delhi Private School in Sharjah.
These are just some of the better-known names from the world of sport who are working in schools in the UAE, sharing their knowledge and experience with young athletes.
School sports are, on the whole, not particularly well organised, because of the lack of umbrella organisations, but virtually every educational institution has invested heavily in the sphere. Many have top-class facilities on site and experienced hands to guide the students.
The schools get together for mostly informal competitions so their teams get regular workouts.
"We travel to each school and different people host different matches. So we have put that together ourselves." Kylie McKenzie, the marketing and admissions manager at the British International School in Abu Dhabi, said. "There is no co-ordination at the moment."
The British International School has football, netball, rugby and swimming teams - for boys and girls, and starting from Under Nine - participating in different tournaments and playing on a weekly basis.
"Approximately 100 students are involved in our school teams and [the number is] rising as we grow as a school," McKenzie said. "Matches are scheduled every week across the different participating schools. Then of course our own PE [physical education] department run their own games and programmes as well."
The Wellington International School has rugby, football, basketball, netball, cricket, swimming, rounders and athletics teams.
"We cover all of these sports plus fitness, squash, table tennis and gymnastics," Greg Campbell, a member of Wellington's physical education section, said.
"As PE teachers we all have our own expertise. My expertise and training comes from rugby and cricket, and athletics to a lesser degree. Other staff have expertise in football, cricket, rounders, netball, tennis, trampolining, dance and volleyball.
"We are fortunate to have a former USA college basketball legend in Keith Spencer. [He] is currently working to develop basketball right across the secondary school for both boys and girls."
Wellington's campus has top-class facilities - a three-quarter size football pitch, two outdoor basketball courts, a 300m synthetic running track and long jump pit, a 25m indoor pool, and an indoor sports hall with a basketball and tennis court, which also serves as a netball court. They also have a dance studio, three squash courts, six table tennis tables and a fitness room.
Similar facilities are available at many schools. The Delhi Private School, according to Dutt, has one of the best cricket grounds around, as well as other indoor and outdoor facilities.
Dutt, however, bemoans the lack of organised competitions.
"There are not enough tournaments, especially in cricket," said the former Ranji Trophy cricketer in India, who also played a match for Central Zone against Clive Lloyd's West Indies.
The school has more than 200 children on different sports teams, including cricket, basketball, table tennis, swimming, badminton and football. Sometimes they organise their own competitions.
"Our school is hosting two major tournaments, where international teams also participate," Dutt said. "The first is the Sundeep Batavia Under 12 cricket tournament and the second is a basketball tournament, for which we get teams from Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman and India.
"Besides these, we participate in all the Sharjah Cricket Council tournaments and events like the Maxtalent. We also have at least three boys and girls representing the UAE national teams every year, whatever the age category.
"We also take part in a basketball tournament organised by a Kerala association. In football, we don't play the national schools; we only participate against other Indian schools."
There has been a gradual increase in tournaments in Dubai and Abu Dhabi as the number and size of the international schools has grown. The role of the PE teachers has become greater as there are no school sports association to co-ordinate their activities.
"Rugby has an umbrella organisation in the UAE rugby federation," Campbell said. "They provide some assistance and guidance, but ultimately it's the PE teachers who drive the competition.
"Because sport in general is poorly resourced in so many of Dubai schools in comparison to other developed countries it requires that PE departments are as flexible as possible and take on the role of an umbrella organisation."
For schools like the Delhi Private School, who are affiliated to India's Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE), the annual sports "Nationals" are the highlights of their calendar.
"That's like the World Cup for us," Dutt said. "For the CBSE Nationals, you have qualify first from the Gulf region. Schools from the UAE, Bahrain, Kuwait take part in these qualifiers and then we get a chance to got to the Nationals.
"We go to the CBSE Nationals in swimming, table tennis and basketball.
"The football team also participates in the CBSE Nationals. Unfortunately, there is no cricket in the CBSE Nationals. Our best performance at the Nationals comes from the swimmers. There are two girls, Arushi Wahi and Eehita Chabra, who have been getting gold medals for the last three years. Wahi has also won the individual championship."
Talented youngsters like Wahi and Chabra will face a major dilemma once they turn 18. There are many facilities and clubs where they can hone their skills, but the residency laws do not permit them to stay on in the country on their parents' visas. There is also a dearth of development programmes for expatriates.
"If a talented sportsperson in any school was serious about cracking into the professional realms of their sport they would be best to travel to their home country or a country that has a structured development programme with a pathways to the elite level," Campbell said.