Audit says Bin Hammam enriched himself
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates—The man in charge of Asian soccer, once a candidate to oust FIFA President Sepp Blatter as the sport’s leader, enriched himself and handed out hundreds of thousands of dollars to friends and relatives, according to an audit obtained by The Associated Press. Mohamed bin Hammam, a 63-year-old Qatari whose life ban from soccer was overturned in a sports court this week, is accused of using the Asian Football Confederation bank accounts to conduct his private affairs.
Tiger Woods falters, finishes third as Robert Rock wins Abu Dhabi Championship by 1 shot
ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates (AP) _ Tiger Woods talked all week about his improved ball control _ then it let him down when he needed it most.Woods resembled the Tiger of old over the first three rounds at the Abu Dhabi Championship, stringing together a trio of rounds below par before shooting an even 72 in Sunday’s finale to finish in a tie for third place behind winner Robert Rock and U.S. Open champion Rory McIlroy.
Rory McIlroy wins Dubai World Championship
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — Rory McIlroy made five straight birdies down the stretch to overtake Justin Rose and win the Dubai World Championship on Sunday, Nov. 25, ending a historic year in which the 23-year-old Northern Irishman won the PGA Championship and the European and PGA tour money titles.
Red Bull’s Vettel wins controversial Malaysian Grand Prix
SEPANG, Malaysia (AP) — Sebastian Vettel’s controversial win at the Malaysian Grand Prix left some fans wondering who really decides a race outcome — the driver or the team. The three-time defending champion ignored team orders and overtook Red Bull teammate Mark Webber for the victory, leaving the Australian driver fuming.
Bahrain soccer stars pay price for protesting
SITRA, Bahrain | When anti-government protests broke out in Bahrain, Alaa and Mohammed Hubail hunkered down in their family compound and refused to take part. They feared their reputations as top soccer players would make them easy targets for police. But Crown Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa soon came out in support of peaceful protests. It was the green light the Hubail brothers were looking for and they joined a march of several hundred athletes to Pearl Square, the epicenter of Shiite-led protests against the Gulf nation’s Sunni rulers.
Rosberg wins British Grand Prix marred by a series of tire failures
SILVERSTONE, England (AP) — Nico Rosberg won the British Grand Prix on Sunday after four drivers, including early leader Lewis Hamilton, had to deal with exploding tires and three-time champion Sebastian Vettel quit with 10 laps remaining because of mechanical problems. With Vettel’s Red Bull teammate Mark Webber closing fast, Rosberg managed to win his second race of the year and third of his career by 0.7 seconds in a nail-biting finish — then had to survive a stewards inquiry.
Formula One remains largely a man’s world
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — From the moment Susie Wolff first got into her Williams car, she heard the snickers from those questioning whether women belong in Formula One. There were more than a few cynical looks from teammates before the development driver completed 100 kilometers (62 miles) of Silverstone’s international circuit last year. And more recently, the series’ only female driver has been the target of Stirling Moss, who suggested women don’t have the mental aptitude to compete at the highest level.
Hosting of F1 race backfires on divided Bahrain
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) – Formula One got into the troubled nation of Bahrain and back out last weekend having run a successful grand prix. The cost was more criticism of the racing series.
Gulf women taking up sports in growing numbers, their success fueling dreams of Olympic glory
ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates (AP) _ The awards ceremony for the Gulf Cooperation Council Women’s Games was hardly on the grandest of stages. But the makeshift podium in a tiny conference room of a mostly empty sports resort was the closest thing to an Olympic moment the three women from Qatar, United Arab Emirates and Kuwait had ever experienced _ and they embraced it.
To fast or not? London Olympics forcing Muslim athletes to consider delaying Ramadan fast
DOHA, Qatar (AP) _ When Qatari sprinter Noor al-Malki makes her debut at the London Olympics, she will not be among those contending for a medal. Breaking her own national record in the 100 meters will be enough of a prize. But even this modest goal presents a challenge.
Some countries at track worlds just happy to reach starting line
DAEGU, SOUTH KOREA—Anti-government protests forced Yemeni hurdler Fatima Sulaiman Dahman to train indoors for six months before the world championships. And even then, she often practises alone because there are few other female athletes in the Muslim country. Palestinian runner Bahaa al-Farra had to borrow a pair of spikes from his Omani roommate before his 400-metre race and lamented how he must train on a dirt track because there are no facilities in Gaza.
Qatar out to silence critics over hear fears ahead of 2022 World Cup
DOHA, Qatar (AP) _ Qatar has embarked on a campaign to silence critics who claim the tiny desert nation is too hot to host the 2022 World Cup, relying on an expensive effort that supporters say could one day expand the reach of football’s premier event into other arid regions. Dismissing calls to shift the tournament to the cooler winter months or resort to artificial turf, closed roofs, or matches broken into three 30-minute periods, organizers are betting innovative stadium designs and cutting-edge cooling systems powered by alternative energy can keep players and fans comfortable in a country where summertime temperatures often soar above 110 degrees Fahrenheit (43 degrees Celsius).
Tiny Qatar wants to host 2022 World Cup
The sidewalks and parks in Doha are empty in June, as residents head to the air-conditioned malls for relief from temperatures that soar to 48 degrees (118 F). Professional footballers from the region flee to the cooler climes of Europe to train.And anyone looking to cool off with a cold beer in Qatar’s capital has to make do with a handful of pubs hidden in five-star hotels, since drinking alcohol anywhere else is prohibited in the conservative Muslim country
Dubai World Cup offers relief for Japan
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — When Buena Vista breaks from the starting gate in Saturday’s Dubai World Cup, the 5-year-old mare will have a chance to lift the spirits of all of Japan with a winning performance in the world’s richest horse race. Buena Vista is one of three horses – along with Transcend and Victoire Pisa – in the $10 million race that are based in disaster-ravaged Japan.
Paralyzed jockey now successful owner racing at Dubai World Cup
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — Rolling his wheelchair up to the Meydan Racecourse, Rene Douglas wasn’t sure how he would feel. It had been nearly four years since the Panamanian jockey was paralyzed when his horse fell on top of him at Arlington Park and this week was the first time he had been to a track. A winner of more than 3,600 races, Douglas said he thought about his 27-year career — including winning the 2006 Breeders’ Cup Juvenile Fillies with Dreaming of Anna and 1996 Belmont Stakes on Editor’s Note — but also his new life as co-owner of Private Zone, who races on Meydan on Saturday in the $2 million Dubai Golden Shaheen.
Chechen leader Kadyrov becoming player in big-time horse racing despite troubled rights record
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) _ Repeatedly accused of human rights abuses, Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov is drawing protests in the sports world as he becomes an increasingly avid thoroughbred owner. The bearded, 34-year-old leader is not just running horses in Russia. He has become a major player on the international stage during the past two years, spending millions of dollars to acquire well-bred horses that this year competed in the world’s richest race _ the $10 million Dubai World Cup.
From kicking a fan to rushing into stands, Maradona has brought life to UAE football league
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) _ Bringing Diego Maradona to coach in Dubai was a calculated risk for the Al Wasl club. People can be jailed for public drinking or even making rude gestures in the United Arab Emirates, making somebody with Maradona’s history of drug and alcohol abuse and knack for courting controversy an odd choice for a coach.
With robot jockeys and big prize money, golden era of camel racing taking hold in Middle East
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) _ The camels lumber into view on the dusty racecourse, their approach heralded by the blare of car horns.The grandstand crowd of mostly Gulf Arab men rises to its feet to cheer on the leaders and their jockeys _ tiny robots strapped behind the humps that resemble an overturned wastebasket swathed in racing silks.