Kuwaiti athletes Abdulalh Al-Hajri and Hamad Al-Shegy won the silver medal in the double Bocce competition

ABU DHABI: Kuwaiti athletes with intellectual disabilities added a silver medal to their tally at the Special Olympics IX MENA Games Abu Dhabi 2018. Kuwaiti athletes Abdulalh Al-Hajri and Hamad Al-Shegy won the silver medal in the double Bocce competition.

This takes Kuwait's total tally in the competition up to 20 medals: eight gold, four silver and eight bronze. Kuwait is represented in the event by 50 athletes competing in football, basketball, table tennis, swimming, track and field, bowling and bocce. The special Olympics IX MENA Games and Special Olympics World Games Abu Dhabi 2018 are part of the UAE's National Vision 2021 that highlights full integration of people of determination into everyday society.

Meanwhile, Kuwait will face Jordan in their first competitive football match, after a two-year international ban was lifted by world governing body, FIFA, late last year.

The FIFA-appointed "normalisation committee", tasked with running Kuwait Football Authority affairs, made sure to arrange the first match - a friendly - with a neighbouring Arab nation, the committee's chief Mishal Al-Rabeea told KUNA. The Amman-hosted clash will be followed by another three friendlies, including a home game with Cameroon next week, and an away fixture with Palestine in the occupied territories and a home encounter with Egypt, both in May. All four matches will be registered under the official FIFA calendar, underlined the official, and will provide Kuwait's national side with points under FIFA's global world rankings.

Regarding player selection, he said the national squad would include a 23-man combination of older and young players, mentioning the importance of the new generation's need to gain international experience.

The friendlies will offer all players the opportunity to make their mark ahead of selecting a final squad as the nation looks to build a team ready to compete on the global stage after a two-year absence, he added.

The Serb head coach of local outfit Al-Tahamon, Radi, has been placed in charge of the national side for the upcoming fixtures. The squad arrived in Amman on Monday and is currently training at the King Abdullah Sports City ahead of their anticipated encounter at the facility's main stadium. - KUNA