- MoU will see Dubai host a first-of-its-kind extravaganza on ice, Dubai Ice Show, from December 3-5
- Avangard Omsk, the most recent winners of Gagarin Cup, will play Ak Bars of Kazan at Coca Cola Arena on Dec 3 as part of Dubai Ice Show
Dubai, UAE – October 17, 2021: Dubai Sports Council and Dubai Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing have signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Kontinental Hockey League and Russian professional ice hockey team Avangard to develop hockey and promote the image of the KHL in the UAE.
As a first step towards achieving the strategic objectives of the MoU, Dubai will host the ‘Dubai Ice Show' (ice-dubai.com) from December 3 to 5, with the KHL regular season game between the most recent winners of the Gagarin Cup, Omsk-based Avangard and Ak Bars Kazan being played here on December 3 at the Coca Cola Arena, the multipurpose indoor complex with a capacity of 17,000.
In addition, on December 4th and 5th, fans will be able to watch the “Sleeping Beauty” ice show, directed by Olympic figure skating champion, Tatiana Navka, the Olympic champion in figure skating. The lead will be performed by Tatiana Navka and Olympic figure skating champion Alina Zagitova.
The announcement was made during the official signing of the MoU at Dubai Sports Council on Sunday, where His Excellency Saeed Hareb, Secretary General of Dubai Sports Council, Ahmed Al Khaja, CEO of Dubai Festivals and Retail Establishments at Dubai Tourism, Alexey Morozov, President of Kontinental Hockey League, and Alexander Krylov, Chairman of Avangard Omsk's HC Board of Directors, represented the four sides.
Nasser Aman Al Rahma, Assistant Secretary General of Dubai Sports Council, was present at the signing alongside other top official from the Council, DTCM, KHL and Avangard.
His Excellency Saeed Hareb, Secretary General of Dubai Sports Council, said: “We are really excited about Dubai Ice Show as we sign this MOU alongside Dubai's Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing, with our partners from Russia, Kontinental Hockey League and Avangard Hockey Club.
“Dubai is home to people from more than 195 countries, including a big number from Russia and other countries where ice hockey is a hugely popular sport. The Dubai Ice Show is going to be a fantastic event for them, as well as others, including Emirati fans of ice sports.
“The event is planned for early December, between December 3-5. December 4 will be the official Day of Russia at Expo 2020. It is going to be a perfect opportunity for families to spend some great days together. There are many activities planned, including a spectacular theatrical show on ice featuring world-famous stars of figure skating from Russia, as well as an ice-hockey match between two top teams from Russia.
“We at Dubai Sports Council are always excited about bringing new events to Dubai for different members of our diverse community. Ice Hockey is one of the most popular sports in the world with millions of fans around the globe, including many in Dubai, and we are looking forward to three days of great action and entertainment on ice this December.”
HE Ahmed Al Khaja, CEO of Dubai Festivals and Retail Establishment at Dubai Tourism, said: “We are delighted to sign this MoU with the Kontinental Hockey League, “Avangard” hockey club and Dubai Sports Council for a unique collaboration in sports entertainment.
“The Dubai Ice Show highlights Dubai's position as a leading events destination and also supports the city's ongoing efforts to boost sports tourism. With ice hockey being a very popular sport followed passionately by millions of fans around the world, Dubai Festivals and Retail Establishment is pleased to provide its utmost support and cooperation in promoting this game further in this part of the world, especially through our well known digital platform, Dubai Calendar, which curates and manages the official listing of key events and entertainment in Dubai.
“We look forward to welcoming to our city, the internationally acclaimed hockey teams, as well as world famous figure skating stars. With the health and safety of all guests, team members, performers and staff remaining our top priority, the hosting of the ice hockey event also reaffirms Dubai's position as one of the world's safest destinations.'
Alexey Morozov, KHL President, said: “We are excited about the KHL World Games project being resumed after almost two years! The UAE will become the 15th country to host a KHL game, and we are very pleased that the most recent Gagarin Cup winner “Avangard” Omsk and the only three-time champion of our League “Ak Bars” will go to Dubai. The match-up of these two teams during the latest playoffs resulted in one of the best series in the entire KHL history. The upcoming game is bound to be hard fought and spectacular.
“We appreciate the cooperation with Dubai Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing, Dubai Sports Council, and “Avangard” hockey club enabling the game to be played in such a remarkable location.
“The UAE is a promising market for the development of hockey, and we will make every effort possible to ensure that getting acquainted with the KHL and our game will become an outstanding and memorable event for Dubai.”
Alexander Krylov, «Avangard» HC Board of Directors Chairman, added: “Having received an offer from the League to hold a game in the UAE, Avangard was pleased to support this initiative. Significantly, the event will take place on the Day of Russia at Expo 2020 Dubai.
“It is an honor and a big responsibility for us. We are current champions not only on ice, but off ice as well - in marketing, interacting with mass media, social media, so I have no doubt that our expertise and experience will help us to organise Dubai Ice Show perfectly well.
“It is a great new challenge for our club. The Arena that has not hosted any hockey games needs to be prepared for an official KHL game in a short span of time. We need to work out many details. I am confident that we will succeed in holding an event that will be a source of pride not only for the KHL, but for the country in general.
“We are planning to hold a number of bright and memorable events so that people in Dubai get a chance to explore Russian hockey and ice sports. We are looking forward to see you in Dubai in early December!”