United Arab Emirates world champion Mohammad Al Qaid set two new world records and another Asian record on his way to three gold medals on the fourth day of the International Wheelchair and Amputee Sports Federation Games yesterday.
Al Qaid set new world marks in the 400 meter wheelchair (T34) and 1,500 meters, plus a continentâ€™s best effort in the 800 meters to take his tally at the Games to four. The UAE team added nine medals yesterday â€” three gold, three silver and three bronze â€” to take the host nationâ€™s medal tally to 37 â€” 7 gold, 14 silver and 16 bronze.
Al Qaidâ€™s finished the 800 meters with a time of 1min 51.41 seconds, beating Australian Rheed McCracken and Thai Pichaya Kurattanasiri. In the club throw, UAE champion Souhaib Al Qasim came second with a throw of 22.40 meters, behind Polandâ€™s Maciej Sochal, who took the gold with a throw of 27.61 meters.
The UAEâ€™s Aisha Salem Bin Khalid won a silver medal in the discus wheel chair event with a throw of 10.65 meters, behind Chinaâ€™s Feixia Dong. This is the second medal for Aisha in the championship. Her teammate Thuraya Al Zaâ€™abi won the bronze medal in the shot put wheelchair event with a throw of 6.04 metres, behind South Africaâ€™s Emily Zandile Nhlapo, who took gold with a throw of 6.81 meters, and Germanyâ€™s Marie Bramer, who got the silver medal with a throw of 6.30 meters.
In the 400-meter wheelchair event, Ayed Al Hababi clinched the bronze medal in a time of 53.79 seconds, behind Chinaâ€™s Huzhao Li, who finished first in 52 seconds, and Thai Pichet Krungget, who was first runner-up in 52.84 seconds.
In the shooting competition, Abdullah Al Aryani of the UAE finished second in the 10-metre air rifle (R3) event, scoring 700.3 points, behind Lorraine Lambert of Britain who came first with a total of 700.7 points. In the 10m air rifle (R5) event, the UAEâ€™s Abdullah Al Hababi won the bronze medal with 700.3 points, while Iranian Akbar Alipour took gold with 702.4 points, and Great Britainâ€™s Amy Hursthouse took silver with 700.8 points.
Tarek Bin Khadim, Deputy Chairman of the Organizing Committee and Chairman of the Executive Committee, commended the outstanding efforts of our athletes, particularly the great achievements of Mohammad Al Qaid, who broke world and Asian records in the 200- and 800-metre wheelchair event and another Asian record in the 800-metre wheelchair event, to prove that the double gold medal in New Zealand was not a once-off.
Bin Khadim said the achievements of the â€œKnights of Willâ€ are the fruit of our leadershipâ€™s support of disabled sports, which provided them with all necessary elements to achieve success and excellence. He added that such achievements â€œwill be positively reflected in the progress of our national teams as our champions prepare for new challenges, with a particular focus on the Paralympic Games in London 2012.â€ The IWAS World Games 2011 is the most important event for preparation and qualification before the teamâ€™s appearance in London next summer.
Bin Khadim urged the athletes to continue their efforts and win more medals in the remaining days of the IWAS World Games 2011, which saw historic success for the UAE in terms of both organizing and the many unforgettable moments and victories.