UAE NOC vice-president Ahmad Belhoul Al Falasi, left, presented World Rugby chairman Sir Bill Beaumont with a trophy ©UAENOC

The vice-president of the United Arab Emirates National Olympic Committee (NOC), Ahmad Belhoul Al Falasi, met with World Rugby chairman Sir Bill Beaumont in Dubai to discuss new cooperation to boost rugby union in the UAE.

Sir Bill introduced several programmes and initiatives planned by World Rugby to support development at all levels.

Falasi is confident that significant rugby progress is being made in the UAE and cited the available sports facilities, which can boast floodlit pitches and natural grass. 

Additionally, the UAE's outstanding infrastructure leaves the country ready to host international sporting events, such as the Dubai Sevens tournament.

"The sport of rugby in the UAE has made rapid progress under the leadership of World Rugby which is keen on supporting the UAE's efforts in promoting the game among all segments of society," Falasi said.

"The development of the sport in the UAE is underlined by the historic feat of winning the West Asian Rugby Cups for men and women held in Doha, Qatar."

Dubai is a regular stopover for the World Rugby Sevens Series ©Getty Images
Dubai is a regular stopover for the World Rugby Sevens Series ©Getty Images

Rugby has attracted impressive crowds and can be considered one of the most-loved sports event in the UAE, especially after the impressive double gold at the West Asia 7s Trophy 2021.

The Emirati men beat Iran by 38-14 in the final and UAE women’s team dominated Qatar 41-0.

"The NOC, under the Presidency of Sheikh Ahmed Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, is keen to support the development of all sports as well as all sportsmen and women," Falasi added.

Judo, handball, taekwondo and tennis are among other sports the NOC is seeking to develop.