x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 July 2017

UAE's only Olympic gold medallist issues firm warning

Sheikh Ahmed bin Hashar has decided to stop working with his Olympic-bound protege Sheikh Juma bin Dalmouk and challenged the UAE shooting federation to give him an official role if they want him to continue.

DUBAI // Sheikh Ahmed bin Hashar has decided to stop working with his Olympic-bound protege Sheikh Juma bin Dalmouk and challenged the UAE shooting federation to give him an official role if they want him to continue.

Sheikh Ahmed, the winner of the UAE's only gold medal at an Olympics, introduced Sheikh Juma to the sport three years ago and coached him, in an unofficial capacity, to the 2010 Asian Games double trap silver medal and gold in the same event at last month's Asian Shooting Championship in Doha.

The 2004 Athens Olympics double trap champion, however, has decided to stop until the officials from the shooting federation officially appoint him as a coach.

"In my health situation, I cannot go through any struggle," said Sheikh Ahmed, who announced his retirement from the sport last month because of a heart ailment.

"If things are going to be put out for me properly, like it happens in the rest of the world, I will work. Other than that, guys, let's leave me alone," he said at a National Olympic Committee press conference.

Sheikh Juma, 26, qualified for London 2012 by winning the Asian Championships.

"I am the one who taught Sheikh Juma, I am the one who grabbed him from nowhere and guide him from A to Z," Sheikh Ahmed said.

"Now he has qualified. What else would you want me to do? Here, I gifted him to you. Take it and show me what you can do now. They have to be responsible. They have to announce what is going to happen from now to the Olympics."

Sheikh Ahmed said the shooting federation have to step forward and offer him an olive branch.

"Someone has to come, sit across the table and have an agreement," he said. "I don't know what's going to happen over the next six months. I might be sitting in the desert, not even watching the Olympic or I might be sitting with him in the final."