Sharjah: The Sharjah Ramadan Football Championship (SRFC), organised by Sharjah Sports Channel will begin on Friday with the largest number of five-a-side teams battling for a prize pot worth Dh500,000.

The third edition to be held from May 18 to June 1, will see some of the UAE’s strongest clubs in the short-form format. There will be 16 adult teams playing in a four-group knockout competition, and — for the first time — four under-14 junior sides competing head-to-head to determine a winner.

Held under the patronage of Shaikh Sultan Bin Mohammad Bin Sultan Al Qasimi, Crown Prince and Deputy Ruler of Sharjah, the matches at Sharjah Sports Club will have a mass television audience as Sharjah Sports Channel broadcasts each game, with commentary from expert pundits.

The championship’s opening ceremony will take place at Sharjah Sports Club at 10pm, followed 30 minutes later by the opening Under-14 match between Rich Target and Wasit, while Al Bayan takes on Leader Sport in the senior competition.

The winner of the senior competition will receive Dh200,000, while the losing finalist will receive Dh100,000 and third place will take home Dh50,000. In the junior category, Dh50,000 will be awarded to the winners and Dh30,000 to the runners-up. There will also be special prizes for the competition’s highest goalscorer, the Most Valuable Player and the best goalkeeper.

The aim of organisers Sharjah Sports Channel is to highlight the skills of top local footballers, and maintain the prevalence of sports events throughout Ramadan.