Jonathan Raymond | February 20, 2014
Big ‘ole tournaments are always fun – the FA Cup, college basketball’s March Madness, Grand Slam and Major Opens in tennis and golf.
There’s just something alluring about the prospect of a Cinderella emerging from a gigantic field and marching through many stages to victory. (Not that it usually happens. Chelsea or Duke or Rafael Nadal usually win, but every now and then, there’s a Wigan)
Duplays, with Adidas, are bringing the concept here to the UAE for a nationwide 7-a-side, 8-week-long football tournament, starting on March 16.
Six divisions – universities, youth, corporate, girls, Dubai, Abu Dhabi – will produce winners from among what they’re expecting to be 160 teams to compete in a 24-team Champions Weekend at the end of it in May.
There are, of course, plenty of local football leagues around – plenty of local leagues for just about every sport. This, though, is the first attempt I’m aware of at organising a nationally-integrated competition, which is kind of neat.
If you’re interested, feel free to check out the tournament’s website.