Saudi Arabia witnessed last week another milestone for women in the field of sports with the Kingdom’s very first cricket match for women that was held in Jeddah.
The event took place at the Kingdom Sports Complex and has witnessed the participation of female athletes from eight countries including Saudi Arabia, India, Pakistan, South Africa, Philippines, Indonesia, Sudan, and Egypt.
The match which was officiated by professional umpires, saw the victory of Jeddah Strikers over Makkah Thunders.
The event saw the attendance of public figures including president Aijaz Khan and executive secretary Haroon Mahfouz, according to Siasat.com.
Speaking on this joyful occasion, president of the Group, Alungal Mohammed, said, “Something like this would not have been thought to be possible couple of years ago. With the encouragement from the government and the vision of the ministries, this is an example that the country is progressing fast on the track to achieving its Vision 2030 goals.”
“We have been successfully organizing tournaments in Jeddah for over two decades and throughout, we had been dreaming of this moment for a long time. We are glad that Abeer Medical Group took this initiative to raise awareness for women empowerment and gender equality,” he continued.
Meet Yasmine Hassan: Newly Appointed SFA Ambassador
Fitness expert Yasmine Hassan has been appointed by the Saudi Sports for All Federation as their official ambassador and as a Baytak Nadeek (your home is your gym) trainer.
Yasmine, with extensive education in physiology and physicality, is emphatic about the individualistic nature of physical fitness. “I am fascinated by the human body! The more I learn in that field the more I understand how unique every individual is and no two humans will have the same prescription to reach their goals – even if they have the same goal,” she said.
— Sports for All | الرياضة للجميع (@Saudi_SFA) June 1, 2020
“After graduating, I realized that all I really wanted to do was to be active in workout…”
“I decided to change directions and merge my passion for fitness with my passion for design – designing bodies instead of buildings,” she explained. “Initially I wanted to train myself, and people would approach me to ask for advice and to train alongside. I was then certain God was sending me a sign to pursue this career.”
Yasmine us also passionate about growing her own local gym brand, SBTRCT, by targeting a wider market segment and she already has several several business verticals and potential applications for the gym.
“Eventually, I’d like to take SBTRCT to schools and universities by offering turnkey solutions. My plans include designing fitness facilities, establishing training programs, and training the trainers’ educational courses. This will ensure health and fitness is delivered in a fun and safe manner in schools and universities across Saudi Arabia.” She says.
Commenting on her new role with SFA and her plans to take advantage from such an impressive position, she said: “To collaborate with entities like the Saudi SFA where I can continue to grow and improve myself both personally and professionally. I enjoy challenges and look forward to opportunities where I will be able to assume more responsibilities, share my experience, and gain more knowledge regarding the health and fitness field.”
Women Dominating Male Sports : Falconry Edition
For decades, men have been proving people that only they could do everything and anything. Time and time again, females were criticized for not being capable of doing something.
Women have been told that a certain sport may be too tough on them or maybe even make her look manly, but at the end of the day, this is the way men bring women down: by telling them they‘re incapable of doing anything right.
With that said, women have been coming back stronger and more prepared to prove males that anything they could do, women can do it better. You might be surprised at this thought, but if you’ve been up to date with sports, you’d know that women are dominating it!
Saudi Arabia has been known for keeping women hidden and not allowing them to do or interact in anything due to religious reasons. But ever since the beginning of 2019, they’ve been granted more rights and are left to decide or choose whatever they want to participate in freely.
Women have been dominating Combat sports, Hockey, Martial Arts, Football, Bowling, Basketball, and almost anything you could think of! Girl power!
What truly caught our eye and will hopefully make an ultimate difference are women falconers. We’re always used to seeing male falconers, which is why it was very intriguing when Ayesha Al Mansoori took over as a professional female falconer with amazing intricate skills!
Not many women might find this art or sport appealing, but if mastered properly, there’s nothing more satisfying. Falconry is known to be a Multi Million Dirham industry in the Gulf as well as a man’s game.
Which is why Ayesha rose to prove everyone wrong. Ever since the age of four, she’s been telling her father she’d become a falconer; but of course he disregarded her with a faint laugh. But as the years passed, she’d grown to be persistent with this new found art and had commenced with an owl at first since Falcons are heavy for toddlers.
As the years passed, Ayesha’s father would come to her for advice on which falcons he should purchase, that’s how much he admired and respected her opinion.
“Sometimes I didn’t go to school and I’d go out to the desert with my father instead,” says Ms Al Mansoori. “If they would tell me they were going hunting, I’d tell them I would join them.”
Ayesha thoughtfully decided to pair up with Angelique Engels, South African falconer to teach women simple basic introductory classes in Bedouin and Western Falconry.
She had a dream and made it come to life. Vogue Arabia featured her in March 2020’s edition for making a name for herself as well as paving the path for women in a male dominating world.
Women are capable of anything, just give them the space and the materials, and you’ll be surprised at what they have up their sleeves!
The First Female Golf Tournament in Saudi Arabia
Breaking news! The first female golfer in the Arab world is set to compete on tour. Moroccan Maha Haddioui expresses genuine happiness at the fact that she’s part of an extraordinary event happening in this current century. Also, she’s quite surprised that women’s golf has come to Saudi Arabia.
She’s never dreamt of seeing this happen in Saudi Arabia let alone being a part of it, great changes are happening. Maha is predicting this tournament to be a big step forward for the women of Saudi Arabia and on a global scale.
Moroccan Maha has been playing on the (LET), Ladies European Tour, ever since 2012. In this Aramco Saudi Ladies International golf tournament, she’ll be competing for the share of $1 million prize within the time span of two weeks. This is super exciting because finally women are getting what they deserve; the chance to participate and be good at any sport they desire.
The golf tournament is said to take place at the infamous Royal Greens Golf & Country Club in (KAEC) King Abdullah’s Economic City on March 19th through the 22nd for one of the century’s biggest professional women’s competition!
The tournament aims in showing a perfect example of the new opportunities that are now set for Arab women by starting off with the 31 year old Maha. Middle East as a whole is trying to push female sports and females as a whole to a new level altogether.
“I never thought in my life I would go to Saudi to play golf. For me, I thought I’d go to Saudi to do Umrah or go to Makkah. Now, to be able to represent Arab women’s golf in Saudi is something amazing — and something I would never have thought to happen.”
She has a point right there, you’re only expected to do religious things in Saudi Arabia, never did anyone expect to be doing anything other than that.
“I’m just happy to play in new events no matter where they are, but for me it being in an Arab country means a lot. Playing a professional women’s event in Saudi Arabia is amazing and a big step forward as proof that things are really moving forward in a really good way and I am so proud to be part of that, and have the LET be part of that.”
There you have it people, you’re set to witness a huge change in history and we’re glad they’re starting with women.
Do you think the tournament will proceed or do you have a hunch that they might postpone it for health precautions due to the Coronavirus? We’ll just have to wait and see. Make sure to tune in for more information of the tournament!
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