It was very sad to learn today of Al Ain Amblers withdrawl from the Top Tier competitions, we will look at the implications of that below.
First though in this week’s Kukri ME fixtures preview is a massive Top Tier rugby battle between Harlequins and Exiles.
Dubai Exiles encountered a horrible humid evening to take on Doha last weekend and while overcoming a game designed for the forwards, they will hope for less humid conditions in the capital. Harlequins meanwhile would welcome some more handling friendly conditions themselves and if this game opens up, it will be a treat for the spectators. KO at ZSC at 7pm. The Exiles reportedly without Durant Gerber, may find home advantage difficult to overcome.
Harlequins to win.
Dubai Hurricanes host Bahrain, who shocked everyone last weekend with a resolute start to their campaign against Dragons.
Here will we see the strength of their travelling team as they take on a Hurricanes side who played some positive rugby in patches. On paper a resurgent and very hungry Bahrain look to edge a rebuliding Hurricanes, but the travel could be a factor.
KO at the 7s at 7pm.. Bahrain to win.
Doha play home to Saracens, in another intriquing encounter. Saracens took a forefiet win against Amblers last week, but that was only after the game knowledge. The result will have given them confidence and Doha’s loss to Exiles might have them rethinking things. Saying that, not many go to Doha and come back smiling. Doha to win.
Dragons will be both dissapointed and pleased to already have a forefiet win against the Amblers announced. They get off the mark points wise, but need game time to really start to get their systems in place after a wobbly trip to Bahrain. Much is expected of Dragons this season under their new coach.
Looking at the fixtures and game predictions look (on paper) straightforward this weekend. BUT it is still early season and Sharks win over Wasps prove that teams can put in big performances.
Dubai Hurricanes head off to Abu Dhabi to take on Quins, who had a solid win last week and canes will need to find their old ways to get past this game with a win.
Dragons also head off to the capital and will expect a dominant victory over Saracens, who traditionally have played feeder to the A side rather than be able to mount a solid campaign on the league title.
Dragons to win.
Dubai Exiles will play Amblers, who will still be light with the 1st team still deciding to undertake their premiership fixture. But look to Amblers to strengthen somewhat next week with one less team for players to get into.
Tigers have a 4pm KO at DC tommorow to and play a Knights side who also gave Wasps a run for their money. Tigers will have been made sharper with a heavy game against Sharjah last week and may be more clinical, but Knights will not make it easy.
Tigers to win.
Dubai Wasps will be at the 7s and after last week’s horrible loss to Sharks will really need to step up against a Sharjah team who withstood a fighting Tigers last weekend. Sharjah may also have someone who can kick as well, so Wasps will need to fix their issues or see a big gap to the league leaders already early in the season.
Sharjah to win.
Photo Credit to the excellent Sarah Sargent, also showcasing Dubai Exiles exciting 50th Anniversary strip.