DUBAI scored another sporting success last February when it hosted the prestigious Association of Tennis Professionals World Series Tournament. In the stiff selection process, it beat several other countries in Europe, the Far East, Asia and the Middle East. Months of meticulous planning and organisation paid off, and the event was a tremendous success with spectators and participants. Dubai has also made successful efforts at hosting other international sports. Three years ago, horse racing was hardly heard of in Dubai, yet today the rise in its popularity - both among the local and expatriate populace - has been meteoric. The last two years has seen the opening of two race courses of international standards - the Sheikh Ahmed bin Rashid's course and the Nad Al Sheba course. Detailed planning and organisational skills have helped to attract owners of top-class horses, and world famous jockeys to Dubai to compete. British jockeys Lester Piggott and Willie Carson were the first to go there to give the crowds a taste of fine horsemanship, and both were impressed with the competition and facilities. They also agreed that racing had great potential there in the future. Anticipation was high among racing enthusiasts for the new season, which started again last Thursday. Few cities can match the enthusiasm for sports felt in Dubai - the second largest emirate in the United Arab Emirates. It has built for itself a world-class sporting status for hosting international events because of its superb facilities. In golf, the annual Dubai Desert Classic is a ranking tournament on the European PGA circuit, and attracts many of the world's top players. It is played at the demanding Emirates' Golf Club, a course featuring four lakes dug out of the desert. A classic of a different nature is the Dubai Snooker Classic, where the world's leading players vie for the $470,000 prize. Another annual sporting event which attracts global interest is the Dubai Rugby Sevens. Two other attractions are the Emirates' International Rally and the Dubai International Powerboat race. Motor sport is relatively new to the region but it has not stopped the city from producing a FISA champion in Dubai's Mohammed bin Sulayem, who has been a regular winner of the Middle East Rally circuit in recent years. Football ranks as the number one national sport in the United Arab Emirates. Apart from an active local football scene, Dubai has been the venue for various international matches, including meetings between the winners of the English and Scottish Football leagues. Last year, cricket fever ran high when Dubai, for the time, hosted the match between cricketing giants India and world champions Pakistan.