ABU DHABI // A team of eight disabled sports men and women will be travelling to Beijing for the Paralympic Games next months thanks to a sponsorship deal agreed yesterday with the Abu Dhabi based Union National Bank (UNB). Six track and field athletes, a power lifter and a rifle shooter will make the trip to the Olympic city for the event in China which traditionally follows the main Games every four years. The Paralympics open on Sept 6 and run for 11 days.
The UAE party totals 24 members including members of the nation's Athletes with Special Needs, who are led by Abdul Razak Ahmed al Rasheed. He said: "The chance to be a part of the Paralympic Games and compete against the world's best Paralympic athletes is a dream come true for our team and I would like to thank UNB and the other sponsors for their generous support." Mohammad Nasr Abdeen, chief executive of UNB, said: "Participating at the Paralympics marks a significant achievement for each and every athlete and I am sure this is an occasion that will remain etched in the memories of all participants.
"UNB feels very fortunate to be a part of this event and to help fulfil the aspirations of the UAE players which is to bring home honour and pride." Abdeen, who stressed that UNB plays an active role in supporting and sponsoring various events, added: "Supporting people with special needs is a cause that is particularly close to our hearts. I wish the UAE Paralympics contingent the very best at the Games. I am sure all the athletes will do very well and will strive hard to bring honour to themselves as well as to the UAE."