Text size:

  • Small
  • Normal
  • Large

Barclays: you can bank on us

Tournament sponsors to carry on. 'Smooth transfer' to Dubai Sports City will not see event lose the atmosphere of Irish Village.

DUBAI // Barclays, the title sponsors of the Dubai Tennis Championships, have said the criticism aimed at the event following the refusal to give an Israeli player a visa will not have any long-term detrimental effect on the tournament.

Shahar Peer's exclusion from the women's competition drew harsh comments from the WTA and players such as Venus Williams. The WTA chief executive Larry Scott warned organisers that should Israeli players be barred from the UAE in future then the tournament could be taken away from the country. Andy Ram, an Israeli doubles players, was granted a visa. Michael Miebach, the managing director of Barclays Commercial Banking in the region, is confident the tournament can put the controversy behind it.

"I think we saw significantly less discussion in the second half of the tournament so we are moving in the right direction," he said. "We just concentrated on the tournament itself and tried to make the best of it. "Those problems overshadowed the fact that the world's top-10 women came here to play. "That was a spectacular success for the tournament and we are very excited about that. "We were a little unfortunate with the men's tournament with key people being injured or not feeling well. The line up could have been better but we have still seen some good tennis which is the main thing and I regard the fortnight to have been a success."

This is the second year of Barclays' three-year deal with the owners of the 17-year-old event, Dubai Duty Free, to support the annual tournament. Miebach expects the partnership to continue beyond its expiry in 2011. That would see their name on the event when it moves to Dubai Sports City (DSC), where the 10,000 capacity stadium will be able to accommodate double the number of supporters who can watch at the Aviation Club.

Back to the top

More articles

Editor's Picks

 Barcelona’s Lionel Messi plays with a rugby ball during a training session at Ciutat Esportiva Joan Gamper training camp, near Barcelona in Sant Joan Despi, April 15, 2014. REUTERS/Gustau Nacarino

In pictures: Barca play a little rugby before Copa del Rey final

Barcelona and Real Madrid will play in the Copa del Rey final on Wednesday night but the day before the match, Braca players played a little rugby during a training session at Ciutat Esportiva Joan Gamper training camp, in Sant Joan Despi, Spain. Barca meet Real Madrid on Wednesday at 11.30pm (UAE time) and the match will be on BeIn Sports.

 Supporters of China during the Asian Cup Qualifier match between Iraq vs China at Sharjah football stadium in Sharjah. Iraq won the match by 3-1. Pawan Singh / The National

Asian Cup expanding to 24 football teams in 2019

As part of a regional shake-up, the 2019 Asian Cup will climb to 24 teams but next month’s Challenge Cup in the Maldives will be the last, the Asian Football Confederation (AFC) announced.

 Faisal Al Ketbi, standing, has been the poster boy for the upcoming Abu Dhabi World Professional Jiu-Jitsu Championship. Courtesy of Abu Dhabi World Professional Jiu-Jitsu Championship

Faisal Al Ketbi is in spotlight for world jiu-jitsu championships at Abu Dhabi

Faisal Al Ketbi is the poster boy for UAE jiu-jitsu, with his picture prominent in the billboards and advertisements for this week’s Abu Dhabi World Jiu-Jitsu Championship.

 Abdelaziz Haikal, left, avoids getting tackled, but his Al Ahli side were forced to a goalless draw at home to Al Hilal, from Saudi Arabia. Al Ittihad

Al Ahli miss huge opportunity to progress in ACL

Dubai side forced to a goalless draw at home to Al Hilal. Ahmed Rizvi reports.

 Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton, left, gestures from his car after winning the Formula One Malaysian Grand Prix at the Sepang circuit near Kuala Lumpur on March 30, 2014. He will be among the favourites at the Chinese Grand Prix on Sunday. AFP PHOTO / Ed Jones

F1: Mercedes look to capitalise on woes at Red Bull and Ferrari

Ferrari were left reeling after team principal Stefano Domenicali quit and Red Bull were handed a setback when they lost their appeal for Daniel Ricciardo as both incidents have heightened the mood at Mercedes ahead of the Chinese Grand Prix.

 Atletico Madrid's Diego Costa could be wearing a blue kit next season at Chelsea in the English Premier League. REUTERS/Susana Vera

Atletico’s Diego Simeone cannot stop Diego Costa move to Chelsea

Diego Costa has been the standout player for Atletico Madrid with his 26 goals, which has attracted the attention of several leading European clubs and Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea are reportedly at the front of the queue.


To add your event to The National listings, click here

Get the most from The National