Emirates Airline, continuing to set new standards in sports sponsorship, is now promoting the cause of women’s sports in the international arena. The world’s fastest growing airline and winner of over 200 international awards, is an Official Partner of the Asian Football Confederation’s (AFC) Women’s Championship 2003, to be held in Thailand from 8th to 21st June. Fourteen international teams, including the host country and others, such as Japan, India, Philippines, China, Singapore, will compete in the championship, with the top two teams proceeding to the FIFA Women’s World Cup.

The airline is also sponsoring the Most Valuable Player Award that will be presented to the best player on the final day of the tournament together with two return tickets on Emirates Airline from her home country to Dubai.

Mr. Ghaith Al Ghaith, Emirates’ Commercial Operations Director said: "The player demonstrating the best ability, determination, contribution to her team and overall sportsmanship will be hailed as the tournament’s Most Valuable Player. We intend to reward her further by flying her and a guest to Dubai, giving her a fantastic opportunity to unwind after two weeks of hard work and enjoy the infinite leisure and entertainment facilities available in our city.

He added: "Sponsorship programmes allow us to integrate with all our passengers, helping us build a personal relationship with them. Emirates is well-known for sponsoring sporting events in the UAE and around the world and we are the first airline to become the official sponsor of the 2006 FIFA World Cup. Other premier football sponsorships include the Chelsea Football Cup, AFC Champions League and the Asian Cup, in addition to the FIFA Women’s World Cup."

In addition to football, Emirates also supports the PGA European Tour’s Dubai Desert Classic; the World 7s Rugby Series, which includes tournaments in Dubai, England, Wales and South Africa; and The Dubai World Cup, the world’s richest horse race.

The AFC Women’s Championship will be played at two stadia: Rajamangala National Stadium in Bangkok and Nakhon Sawan Stadium in the Nakhon Sawan province. The detailed schedule of the competition can be viewed at

The AFC Women’s Championship was formed in 1968. Following the success of its inaugural event in Hong Kong, the tournament has been held every two years and it now provides Asian representatives to the FIFA Women’s World Cup, also sponsored by Emirates.

The AFC Women’s Championship Thailand 2003 is also sponsored by Coca-Cola, Epson, Kirin, Konica, Maxell, Adidas, and Hyundai.