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Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 16 December 2018

Special Olympics athlete to represent UAE at NBA All-Star in Los Angeles

Butti Al Sheezawi is part of the Emirates' team at next month's games in Abu Dhabi

UAE's Special Olympics athlete Butti al Sheezawi will represent the Middle East this weekend at NBA’s most high-profile and star-studded event of the year. Courtesy: Seven Media
UAE's Special Olympics athlete Butti al Sheezawi will represent the Middle East this weekend at NBA’s most high-profile and star-studded event of the year. Courtesy: Seven Media

A Special Olympics athlete from the UAE will represent the Middle East this weekend at NBA’s most high-profile event of the year.

Butti Al Sheezawi will take to the court at the NBA All-Star weekend in Los Angeles, surrounded by basketball stars including LeBron James and Steph Curry.

Al Sheezawi is flying into LA as part of a programme between Special Olympics and NBA Cares, the league’s global social responsibility programme, to promote Unified Sports. The initiative aims at ensuring social inclusion for people with learning disabilities.

"I can’t wait to meet all the famous players, especially Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O’Neill who are my heroes," he said on Thursday.

“I am very proud to be an ambassador for the UAE at this international event as I prepare to represent my country at the IX MENA Games and hopefully win the gold medal.”

Al Sheezawi, 31, will represent the UAE next month at Special Olympics IX MENA Games 2018 in Abu Dhabi and again at Special Olympics World Games Abu Dhabi 2019. He previously represented the UAE at the 2015 Special Olympics World Summer Games.

Abu Dhabi will host the MENA games on March 14-23, complete with a dazzling opening and closing ceremony and a Youth Summit to allow attendees to learn more about the Special Olympics movement.

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