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Windows Middle East uncovers region's top gamers

Region's biggest gaming tournament concludes with UAE round.

The region's biggest PC gaming tournament concluded last night as Windows Middle East held the UAE round and regional final of its popular tri-nation contest in Dubai.

Following competitions in Kuwait City and Al Khobar in May, the Windows Gaming Competition (AKA WGC2) rocked up to Dubai's Ibn Battuta shopping mall to find the UAE's best Pro Evo and Counterstrike players, and then pit these button-bashing champs against their equivalents from Kuwait and Saudi Arabia.

Day one of the event, which was presented by LG, enabled by telco Etisalat, and supported by Microsoft and Sky Electronics, saw no less than 64 football fans head to the mall's Egypt Court to take part in 2007's widely enjoyed WGC Pro Evo tournament. After six hours of play, a seriously one-sided final saw Khalil Abdulla from Abu Dhabi - playing Brazil - trounce Jawad El Haout of Dubai (playing Italy), 5-1, to progress to the June 23 regional final.

Meanwhile in the UAE's hotly fought Counterstrike contest, a massive 31 teams attended the second day of WGC2 to prove their sniping mettle, with A-List and CWD (featuring WGC 2006's Quake 4 champ Spammah) easing their way into the UAE evening final. This 22-minute frag fest turned up a surprise however as A-List took apart the much-fancied CWD to bag $3000 and its place in the regional final.

Onto WGC2's regional 'best-of-the-best' event on Saturday evening. With three finalists in the Pro Evo final, this round-robin challenge style began with Kuwait vs Saudi Arabia. In this match Saudi's Mohammed Al Jaber wasn't found lacking, disposing of Abdullah Al Mashaan from Kuwait's Italy easily enough, with a score of 1-0. The second match saw the UAE's Khalil take on Kuwait.

Here Kuwait struggled again as Khalil's Brazil team emerged two goals ahead.

So then, onto the UAE vs Saudi - our deciding match.

Talk about tight; in this battle neither Brazil team gave an inch, and it looked set for extra time until a nervous late tackle by Khalil brought down Saudi's forward inside the penalty area. Despite an excellent save by Khalil's keeper, Mohammed's reactions were simply too sharp as the rebound was blasted in with little mercy. Mohammed then held his nerve against a last-minute UAE surge to take the first regional WGC prize of US $2000 plus serious product prizes from Microsoft and Taiwanese component giant MSI.

Congratulations that man!

In the end, WGC's regional Counterstrike final was not quite as closely fought. The first contest, Kuwait vs the UAE, saw Gameworks clan (GW) emerge winner with a score of 11 rounds to 7. The second match then quickly closed the deal as GW thrashed Saudi's Team Illusion 11-2. The playoff for second place then went as these results suggest, with the UAE's A-List wiping out Illusion with a score of 11-4.

Cue a team cheque of $6000 for GW and more product prizes.

If you want to find out more check out our pictures and the regional final's Counterstrike videos at itp.net/wgc shortly. In the meantime, send us your WGC feedback to windows@itp.com.