A look ahead to what sports fans in the UAE can look forward to this week.
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TENNIS: ATP Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championship, Monday onwards, matches start from 2pm
World No 1 Novak Djokovic goes for a fifth Dubai title, and first since 2013, when the men take centre stage at the Dubai Duty Free Tennis Stadium this week. The Serb gets his campaign started against Spain's Tommy Robredo while other tantalising ties include sixth seed Feliciano Lopez taking on fellow Spaniard and world No 35 Guillermo Garcia-Lopez and seventh seed Martin Klizan facing highly rated Australian Nick Kyrgios
CRICKET: Pakistan Super League, final, Tuesday, Dubai International Stadium, 8pm
Islamabad United swatted aside Karachi Kings with relative ease on Saturday to set up a qualifying final against Peshawar Zalmi, who get a second bite at the cherry after losing their first qualifying final Quetta Gladiators on Friday. Misbah-ul-Haq’s Islamabad have been flat-track bullies over the PSL’s two worst teams, it will be interesting to see if they can now overcome two of the competition’s better drilled sides to win the inaugural competition.
FOOTBALL: Asian Champions League, group stage, Wednesday, various kick-off times
Arabian Gulf League champions Al Ain get their Asian Champions League quest started on Tuesday with a home tie against Qatar’s El Jaish (7pm). The Garden City club have not won this competition since 2003 and will look to get their campaign in Group D, which also includes Uzbekistan’s Nasaf and Saudi Arabia giants Al Ahli, off to a winning start at Hazza bin Zayed Stadium. Al Nasr are also in action Tuesday, the Dubai club are away to Foolas Mobarakeh Sepahan in Iran. Al Jazira, the UAE’s third representative in this year’s ACL, play Wednesday, away to Tractor Sazi Tabriz in Group C.
SWIMMING: Fina World Cup Series, Abu Dhabi Sailing & Yacht Club, Corniche, Friday until Monday, February 29
The capital will host 10km marathon swimming, open water swim and high diving World Cup competitions. Over 130 of the world’s leading male and female open water swimmers from 35 countries are expected to attend the event in Abu Dhabi, competing for their chance to gain qualifying points for the Rio Olympics and a slice of the US$60,000 (Dh220,400) prize fund. In the second event, the world’s top 25 men’s high divers and top 20 women’s high divers will compete for a prize fund of over US$118,000 (Dh433,400).
FOOTBALL: President’s Cup, round of 16, Friday and Saturday, kick offs at 5.35pm and 8.35pm
Al Nasr ended a 26-year wait for a trophy by overcoming Al Ahli via a penalty shoot-out to lift the 2015 President’s Cup last June. Ivan Jovanovic’s side face a difficult title defence with AGL rivals Sharjah their first assignment in this year’s competition. The matches this year all take place at neutral venues, so Al Ahli’s Rashid Stadium will play host on Saturday (8.35pm). Other plum ties include Al Wahda v Al Wasl, Friday, 5.35pm and Ah Ahli v Ajman, Friday, 8.35pm.