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His Excellency launches new ‘Tolerance Oval’ at Abu Dhabi Cricket in tribute to the power of cricket to unite and transcend boundaries. His Excellency Sheikh Nahayan Mabarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Tolerance in the UAE, presented on Friday night Team Labotel with the inaugural 2018 Tolerance Cricket Cup championship trophy, alongside launching the new ‘Tolerance Oval’ at Abu Dhabi Cricket, marking the culmination of Tolerance Week in the United Arab Emirates.

H.E. Sheikh Nahayan Mabarak Al Nahyan, who launched the Tolerance Cricket Cup earlier this year, graciously awarded Team Labotel with the winning trophy after their victory over rivals Saadiyat Falcons in a thrilling T20 final at ADC.

Sheikh Nahayan, speaking on Friday evening after the final had concluded, offered insights into how cricket has a wonderful ability to bring people from different nationalities and cultures together and promote the tolerance and inclusion that the UAE is so famously admired for.

Sheikh Nahayan also commented on how delighted and proud the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan would have been of the Tolerance Cricket Cup, as it allows players to exhibit skills, characteristics and values which the late Sheikh Zayed held so highly.

Sheikh Nahayan said that the late Sheikh Zayed “would be delighted by this competition as it enabled young men to exhibit skills not necessarily apparent as they accomplish daily work for their employers. Sheikh Zayed would hope that those employers, and all other spectators, get a new appreciation of the capabilities, characters and resolve of the individuals on the field, and, by extension, of their communities.

He would be happy for all of us, cricket fans, to see the wonderful display of diverse people coming together and working co-operatively for a common goal. He would have known that we are witnessing an example of the energy, teamwork and mutual respect that makes the United Arab Emirates a special, peaceful and prosperous global society

Sheikh Nahayan

After speaking, Sheikh Nahayan then presented awards to the players for their achievements throughout the championship. Sheikh Nahayan was joined on stage by Pakistani cricketing legend, Waqar Younis, who as Ambassador of the Tolerance Cricket Cup was on hand to meet with players, offer them his invaluable guidance, and facilitate the coin toss at the opening of the match.

Sheikh Nahayan honoured Abu Dhabi Cricket by launching a new ‘Tolerance Oval’ for the playing of international and community matches and expressed his anticipation for an even bigger and better 2019 edition, scheduled to commence in September 2019.

Speaking of his anticipation of next year’s Tolerance Cricket Cup, Sheikh Nahayan said: “The Ministry of Tolerance looks forward to the continuous support of the sponsors and partners, and perhaps even more for the second Tolerance Cricket Cup Competition next fall.

“It is clear to us all that next year’s edition of the Tolerance Cricket Cup promises to be hopefully even better than this year. It is a wonderful competition.”

Captain of Team Labotel Junaid Mohamed Shaan accepted the Tolerance Cup trophy after his team successfully chased down the Falcon’s first innings score of 155 in the thrilling finale. Sheikh Nahayan applauded the professionalism and dedication of both sides and spoke warmly of their success.

Speaking after His Excellency’s visit, Matt Boucher, Acting CEO of Abu Dhabi Cricket said: “On behalf of both Abu Dhabi Sports Council and Abu Dhabi Cricket it was my pleasure to welcome His Excellency to Abu Dhabi Cricket on Friday evening.

“We have had the distinct honour of hosting 31 matches over 7 weeks for the 2018 Tolerance Cricket Cup involving 16 worker villages covering every emirate in the United Arab Emirates, and involving over 300 players with 18 different nationalities. This is a true nationwide event, giving back to the communities who love the sport of cricket so dearly. Our appreciation goes to everyone at the Ministry of Tolerance for their development and commitment towards another outstanding sporting first for the UAE.

“I express my warmest thanks to Sheikh Nahayan for attending the final and for his renaming of our ICC-accredited oval to become the ‘Tolerance Oval’; a daily reminder and a fitting tribute to the power cricket has in bringing cultures and nationalities together.”


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