Dubai: Title favourites Spain and Argentina were off to a perfect start in the men and women’s competitions of the DP World Padel Championship, which kicked off on Monday.
In men’s Group A competition, Spain started their campaign with a 3-0 win over Uruguay and Portugal blanked Britain 3-0.
Making their intentions clear, the six-time champions, Argentina, beat Belgium 3-0 in a Group B match, while Italy battled past the Netherlands 2-1.
In Group C, Brazil defeated UAE 3-0, while Chile registered an easy win over Ecuador. France and Paraguay posted victories in Group D. France got the better of Mexico and Paraguay downed Qatar 3-0.
The top-ranked Spain also started well in the women’s competition. Spain dominated the proceedings from the beginning and didn’t give any room to their American rivals and won the match 3-0 after winning both sets 6-0, 6-2.
In another match of Group A, Germany also collected full points after overcoming Chile 2-1. In Group B, Argentina beat Uruguay 3-0 while Belgium defeated Japan 3-0.
Portugal and Italy posted wins in Group C. Sweden struggled past France 2-1 and Paraguay beat UAE 3-0 in Group D matches.
Fans coming out in force
The top two teams from each group will advance to the quarter-finals. The third team from each group will compete for positions nine to twelve, while the rest of the teams will fight for positions thirteen to seventeen.
Padel is a growing obsession among sports enthusiasts in Dubai and the opening day saw fans come out in force to welcome the world’s best male and female players.
Matar Mohammed Al Tayer, Vice-Chairman of the Dubai Sports Council, hailed Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of the Executive Council of Dubai, for his patronage. The International Padel Federation’s flagship biennial championship is currently under way with the participation of 34 teams battling for top honours in the men’s and women’s competitions.
Taking place in Dubai for the first time, the championship is hosted by the UAE Padel Association (UAEPA) in association with the Dubai Sports Council and Dubai Department of Economy & Tourism (DET).
“Thanks to the support and patronage of Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, and the efforts of the UAE Padel Association, headed by Sheikh Saeed Bin Maktoum Bin Juma Al Maktoum, the padel sports have grown rapidly across the UAE, Gulf and global levels and we have the most modern and best stadiums as well as national organisational expertise.
“The country’s role in this sport has been strengthened, and the ability to organise world-class championships of this stature is enhanced as well.
Group A: Spain 3 Uruguay 0, Portugal 3 Great Britain 0
Group B: Argentina 3 Belgium 0, Italy 2 Netherlands 1
Group C: Brazil 3 UAE 0, Chile 3 Ecuador 0
Group D: France 3 Mexico 0, Paraguay 3 Qatar 0
Group A: Spain 3 US 0, Germany 2 Chile 1
Group B: Argentina 3 Uruguay 0, Belgium 3 Japan 0
Group C: Portugal 3 Mexico 0, Italy 3 Netherlands 0
Group D: Sweden 2 France 1, Paraguay 3 UAE 0.