This is the last weekend of rugby before the 7s season and many would not expect Jebel Ali Dragons to be topping both the West Asia and UAERF premiership tables. They play a massive game against Harlequins this weekend in a game that will confirm top spot for the 7s break.
Dragons v Harlequins
Dragons are playing at home where last weekend they overran a Dubai Exiles side that has suddenly forgotten how to win. Harlequins, who beat Exiles earlier in the season will be very cautious facing a side who earlier in the season were struggling to find the pace of the league. Considering the power running game of Harlequins and the points hauls of Dragons recent matches, this should be a great open free flowing match.
Our Prediction – Dragons to win.
Saracens v Exiles
A very interesting encounter, considering that Dubai Exiles look a fish out of water right now. Team form is an unfathomable conundrum for coaches and sometimes you just must ride the bad times. Saracens equally have been frustrated with small margin losses and unforced mistakes costing them games. If they can get that together, Saracens themselves may start a winning run, making this league even more intriguing. A strong Exiles should have the better of Saracens, but at this point of the season, its guess work.
Our Prediction – Too close to call, but a Saracens win would shake up the league.
Doha v Bahrain
This weekend is time for some good old fashioned West Asia club derby action. These two teams have seen a lot of each other over the years and both will be thankful for the new format of the West Asia Premiership. However, this season, with Bahrain’s recent acquisitions and form, they will be licking their lips at some payback for some heavy defeats over the last few years. Doha are in a little rebuild phase and themselves are not quite the force this year. This will be an interesting game.
Our Prediction – Bahrain to win a rare Doha away game.
Dragons v Sharks
Dubai Sharks are in unfamiliar waters lying 3rd in the conference table. The team that has been in 2 plate finals in a row has vowed to make the Top 6 this season and so far, are looking to achieve that with style. Each game for the Sharks is a test and undefeated Dragons away, will probably be one of their biggest this season. Dubai Wasps held Dragons to 15 points last week and Sharks may do their homework and take a lot from that. Dragons will be looking for a clean home game sweep and may well be one challenge to far for Sharks, but this is far from a probability of old.
Our Prediction – Dragons win.
Knights v Hurricanes
The Knights have been thwarting sides all season, while yet to upset any teams in the top 6. Dubai Hurricanes may not be playing as well as they would like, but last weekend’s narrow loss to Sharks after a strong second half performance will give them confidence.
Our Prediction – Hurricanes win.
Harelquins v Wasps
Harlequins manager Mike Ballard has tasked his side to deliver home wins this season and while Wasps have been showing improvements, their scores at least will give Mike confidence of success again this weekend. Dubai Wasps even if they win, might have left the charge for Top 6 too late, but last week’s loss to Dragons was a performance to work with.
Our Prediction – Harlequins win.
Amblers v Tigers
Al Ain have settled into the conference days of old and have started to rake up the points against their opponents. Once again, playing at home, the noise level and expectation in Al Ain will be at its height. Tigers themselves are having a moderate season, although getting a Top 6 spot could be a struggle now Amblers are back to the winning ways.
Our Prediction – Amblers win.
Saracens v Sharjah
Sharjah Wanderers need a win this weekend, to bring the confidence and swagger back to their game, but also to halt the slide down the table. With 8 teams realistically vying for 6 places, any losses now will be almost impossible to make up. Sharjah will have at least targeted this game for a BP win. Saracens just need to find some fun in playing.
Cover Photo by Hapoop Photography