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Mondial Hisham Fulath is back!

FOLLOWING a two-year absence, Mondial Hisham Fulath is back, and it looks bigger than ever!

There are a number of events that take place around the world that aim to increase awareness to a specific issue. Some football clubs hold charity matches which aim to support the community. Earlier this month, Real Madrid C.F. played against Liverpool FC in a charity match that had both clubs fielding teams of legends. Similarly, Manchester United hosted FC Bayern Munich legends in a match that raised funds for charity. Such events use the popularity of football to support local charities as well as bring awareness to various issues.

In 2008, an avid football fan, Hisham Fulath passed away after a battle with cancer, and in his memory family and friends formed a Ramadan football tournament, the Mondial Hisham Fulath (MHF). The tournament was created mainly to support those who battle cancer, local charities and to increase cancer awareness within Bahrain. Initially, it was planned as a one-off outdoor tournament with the aim of raising funds for charity in addition to increasing cancer support in Bahrain. The first MHF tournament was held in Manama Club, and consisted of 16 teams competing. The noble cause of the tournament attracted a family atmosphere, where women and children would come to watch their relatives and friends play.

Building on the tournament's success in 2008, MHF was launched in 2009 but in an entirely new format. Unlike its first year, MHF was introduced as an indoor football tournament operating under Futsal Laws of the Game. The new changes made things more competitive, and increased the popularity of MHF and Futsal in Bahrain. The new rules also saw 20 teams compete, and two new divisions added, the under 13's and under 17's.

The new changes made the tournament more popular within the region, and unveiled Bahrain's local Futsal talent. Under this new format, Al Majed, the winning team in 2009, were treated with the special feat of playing against Al-Nassr, a team of pros from Saudi Arabia. Al Majed, the team that was assembled specifically for the Ramadan tournament managed to beat Al-Nassr. Since then, Al Majed was reintroduced as the Diyaar Al Muharraq team, which are the current champions of the Bahrain Futsal Championship.

In 2010 and 2011, one team from Saudi Arabia took part in MHF. While in 2012, an additional Saudi team competed along with Al-Wasl Club F.C. from the U.A.E. The tournament supported local talent all under the roof of a great charitable cause. As another step towards this initiative, in 2011, MHF hosted a Futsal matches involving the Bahrain Women's National Football Team.

Since 2012, MHF was put on hold, and the demand for it did not die down. Fans of different ages have been calling for the return of their favored community football tournament, and answering those calls MHF is back this year. If anything, it looks like it's going to be bigger than ever! Sports stars from different sports have signed up to take part in the tournament, in addition to a selection of local celebrities.

This year's tournament will take part during Ramadan from the 25th of June to the 10th of July at Al-Najma Club. Sponsors drawn to the

event are not limited to Bahrain but neighboring countries, which include the Supreme Committee for Delivery & Legacy, Qatar's delivery & legacy authority for the 2022 Fifa World Cup. Prizes have been allocated for victorious teams and spectators.

All profits of this year's final will go to support two local charities, 'Make them Smile' and 'CareGivers'.

Make sure you get involved, the competition is fierce and the cause is noble!

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Publication:Gulf Daily News (Manama, Bahrain)
Geographic Code:7BAHR
Date:Jun 23, 2015
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