Muscat: The young Al Khabourah Club chairman Sheikh Sultan Al Hosni won 16 votes to beat the incumbent Said Al Busaidi and Nasser Al Alawi to become the chairman of Oman Handball Association (OHA) as its board elections were held at City Seasons Hotel yesterday.
Al Busaidi could only garner seven votes from the 31 clubs while Al Alawi from Al Tale'eya could get eight votes.
Said Al Shihri (25 votes) defeated Abdullah Al Raisi (4 votes) and Basil Al Salami (2 votes) to become the vice-chairman.
Interestingly, Faiz Al Musalhi has retained the post of general secretary after he won 15 votes. He had a close fight with Moosa Al Balushi (13 votes) while the third candidate Nasir Al Hilali could get only three votes. Issa Al Jabri was elected unopposed as the treasurer.
Ahmed Al Jibli (19 votes), Abulrahman Al Shahi (18 votes), Uthman Al Qasmi (16) votes, Ahmed Al Amri (24 votes) and Amer Al Hajri (14 votes) has been elected as board members.
Speaking to Times Sport, soon after his victory, Al Hosni said his agenda will be to have all the clubs on board to play in the domestic League. "That is going to be a challenging thing but that is what we want ultimately," Al Hosni said. "We want to have all the clubs to join us and be part of the domestic League. We need to have a strong base before we think about going global," he noted.
Al Hosni pointed out that the League seasons also need to be "re-worked". "If you look at the League now, it is being played either in February or in March. I think we need to fix a particular season and it has to be played like that unlike the current scenario," he said.
When asked about his "last-minute" plans to stand for the election, Al Hosni had this to say: "I had to think twice before filing my papers. I was the last person to submit the nomination. The reason is because I am also the president of Al Khabourah Club and now since I am elected I have got two important responsibilities. I have to look after my club and at the same time the association as well. So it is going to be a challenging situation but I am confident of running the show from here."
Without naming anyone in particular, Al Hosni revealed that several top national team players as well as some club officials approached him to stand for the election. "Many of the national team players wanted me to stand for the election. Some of these club officials also echoed similar opinion. I also wanted to contribute to the game in some way and I think everything came at the same time so I thought to throw my hat at it," he said.
Heaping praise on his predecessor, Al Hosni said Al Busaidi has done an exceptional job in the last two years. "I think Said has done an excellent job. He has placed our team among the top in the world. He has been credited in organising a successful World Beach Handball Championship in Musannah this year. He did a great job and I should thank him for everything," Al Hosni added.