Dubai: The Emirates Padel Tennis Affiliation (EPTA) was solely fashioned in July 2014, with Shaikh Saeed Bin Maktoum Bin Juma Al Maktoum as its first president. Spearheading the affiliation since then, Shaikh Saeed has gone in regards to the activity of consolidating the game all throughout the nation.In a matter of only a yr, there at the moment are greater than 100 gamers who compete within the UAE’s padel tennis competitions.The EPTA acquired an enormous increase when Shaikh Hamdan Bin Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of Dubai Sports activities Council (DSC), acquired the brand new board of administrators and drove residence the significance of doing the whole lot in its energy to attain the nationwide mission of padel tennis.Since then, Shaikh Hamdan has been a foremost supporter of this new sport, along with his non-public Nad Al Sheba Sports activities Advanced housing 4 state-of-the-art indoor courts and one out of doors courtroom.Padel tennis could also be a comparatively new sport — having been developed within the late Nineteen Sixties in South America — however it’s changing into more and more widespread. It includes string-less racquets and is performed on a courtroom smaller than a tennis courtroom, and is claimed to convey collectively components of each tennis and squash.With the whole lot now in place, Shaikh Saeed is eyeing a vivid future for padel tennis within the UAE, as he relates on this interview with Gulf Information:GULF NEWS: You’ve visited each side, first as a tennis participant and now as president of the EPTA. What strikes you most about this new sport?SHAIKH SAEED: Padel tennis is a brand new sport right here, so we will examine it to a new-born child. This child must be taken care of and nourished correctly, and that is precisely the place the problem is available in. There is no such thing as a doubt that we have to discover methods and means to develop the game uniformly all around the UAE. For us to be the place we’re, we have to thank Shaikh Hamdan. He has been the primary character behind the whole lot that has been occurring in padel tennis within the UAE. He’s at all times pushing us to attain one thing new. And he’s main the best way by private instance, thus giving us this sense that we have to fast-track our efforts and ship to develop into one of many high international locations in padel tennis.Q: Why did you select padel tennis over tennis?A: I used to be a tennis participant, however now I’m a full-time padel tennis fan. There are quite a lot of similarities between the 2 sports activities and, on the similar time, minor variations. However by some means this sport appeals to me, and that’s the reason I selected it over tennis.Q: Now that you simply head the affiliation, what measures are being taken to maintain this sport within the UAE?A: Now we have thought of this facet and I believe we now have already made a stable begin by selling the game from the grassroots ranges. For the reason that finish of the final educational yr, we now have already begun visits to numerous faculties within the nation in order that we may faucet children. And it’s not simply the faculties that we’re fascinated by. In reality, we now have began wanting in every single place. Our scouts go to the seashores, to the shops and to the varied social and sports activities golf equipment within the nation.Q: Do you assume it’s good to get extra individuals concerned in padel tennis? In that case, what are your plans to attain this aim?A: I believe we now have made an excellent begin. At any given time we now have practically 100 gamers turning up for any padel tennis event organised regionally. It is a big quantity. All we have to do now’s discover methods and means to maintain padel tennis and guarantee a wholesome development. I don’t wish to run earlier than strolling. I wish to first be taught to stroll correctly after which begin operating.Q: What kind of targets do you take into consideration? Are you taking any cues from what has occurred in tennis?A: I’m conscious of what has occurred in tennis. I do know what is going on in tennis with the affiliation typically discovering it robust to place collectively robust groups at numerous competitions, together with the Davis Cup. However there’s a distinction between tennis and padel tennis. Ours is a brand new sport and most of it’s performed indoors. So there is no such thing as a restriction on time spent by a participant on courtroom, in comparison with what he would do in tennis. Secondly, it is a sport meant for doubles solely and that could be a big benefit as anybody can play padel tennis.Q: What does the long run for padel tennis seem like?A: The concept is to open up the game all around the UAE, not simply prohibit it to Dubai. There’s a plan in place. One of many surest methods is to push the game, if not peddle the game, to even the furthermost nook of the nation.Q: The Dubai Padel Masters is scheduled to be held on the finish of October. What can we anticipate from internet hosting such a high-ranking occasion right here?A: The Dubai Padel Masters might be like our opening music of a melody. We needed to make a begin someplace, and we thought one of the simplest ways to take action is by bringing in one of the best gamers from internationally to Dubai. Right here, individuals will get the chance of watching one of the best on the planet in a single place. Everyone seems to be welcome to look at the Masters, and this might nicely be step one for us as a younger sport. The Dubai Padel Masters could have a big impact within the UAE. Whereas having among the greatest gamers will trigger a stir, it will likely be dad and mom and kids alike who will discover one thing to look ahead to on this new sport. Throughout the course of the event, we’ll attempt to get these greatest gamers concerned in coaching clinics for children right here. That’s the plan to make sure we go the gap and popularise padel tennis within the UAE.