|Abdulrahman Bukhatir at Al Dhaid, with the ACC Chief Executive and UAE ECB Administrator Mazhar Khan|
The latest Bukhatir cricket project, Al Dhaid Sports Village and its turf ground was officially inaugurated during the Afghanistan v Saudi Arabia ACC Twenty20 Cup match by Abdulrahman Bukhatir.
Al Dhaid and its seven grounds were first started in November 2006 and it's hard-wicket ground has been operational for two years. The first turf ground has taken six months to complete, and apart from a slightly uneven outfield is in perfect playing condition.
The 4-acre site, 65 kilometres outside of Dubai, has been a personal project for Emirates Cricket Board Administrator Mazhar Khan "There was and is a constant need for cricket pitches such is the level of activity in the UAE", says Mr. Khan. The ground at Al Dhaid will also host the MCC and a Bangladesh Port Cricket League next year.
For Abdulrahman Bukhatir, founder of cricket in Sharjah and a prime mover behind Dubai Sports City, "even though sports infrastructure projects are not profit-making centres", he says, "the purpose of a multi-sport project like this at Al Dhaid is to give youngsters a chance to play, get noticed and get ahead. It takes people, organisations and institutions for support and this is what we are hoping for the future. And we hope it benefits the society in Dubai and the whole world."
"The business plan has not been worked out for this, we are still building. Al Dhaid is just starting but like the youngsters who will play here, it is full of promise," says Mr. Bukhatir, "there are enough grounds here to have major tournaments at any point of time."
Filed Nov 26th, 2009