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Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 10 December 2018

UAE rower Hamad Al Matrooshi optimistic of UAE's medal chances at Asian Games

Al Matrooshi carries nation’s hopes in men’s lightweight single sculls repechage, while Ahmed Al Hammadi and Mibarak Al Yassi compete in double sculls repechage

The UAE are pinning their hopes on the rowing team after another frustrating day without a medal at the Asian Games in Jakarta-Palembang on Tuesday.

Hamad Al Matrooshi carries the nation’s hopes in the men’s lightweight single sculls repechage, while Ahmed Al Hammadi and Mibarak Al Yassi compete in the double sculls repechage on Day 4 of the Games on Wednesday.

“I ran into some technical problems with the boat, but that has been attended to and hopeful of a good result,” said Al Matrooshi, who is optimistic that his teammates will do their nation proud by the end of the continental meet.

“It’s been a bit frustrating that we haven’t been able to reach a medal round in any sport, but it can come at any time from now," he added. "Aside from the rowing, we have strong chances in other sports.

“We have seen only three days of competition so far. There are a lot of medals to be won in the next 12 days."

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Al Matrooshi said the fact the UAE have sent to Indonesia their biggest squad in terms of numbers - 134 athletes participating in 23 disciplines - should count for something.

“There are a lot of expectations from our cyclists, jet ski riders, judo, jiu-jitsu, shooters, equestrian team and the athletes. We are hoping we can return with a good haul of medals at the end of the Games,” he added.

On Tuesday, Ahmed Al Ameeri and Othman Al Baluchi failed to go beyond the first round in the men’s 10m pistol.

Reem Al Shamma failed to win a single round over her five opponents in the women’s fencing, while Abdulla Al Hammadi too failed to win a single round in the men’s event.