ABU DHABI // Ahead of their international mission representing the country next month, the British School Al Khubairat know they are closer than ever to matching the standard-bearers of UAE schools rugby.
The Abu Dhabi school will be carrying the flag for the emirates when they compete as the only school side from outside of Europe at the Rosslyn Park Sevens in London in March.
Given the stature of the event, their assignment will be a tough one, but they will be buoyed by their display – if not the result – in their 13-11 defeat to Dubai College at Zayed Sports City.
An early try by the centre Tom Harding plus nine points from the boot of Sam Bullock, the scrum-half, just gave the Dubai side the edge.
Ed Lewsey, the director of rugby at BSAK, whose points were all provided by Fraser Knox, said it was the finest performance by his charges in his two years at the school. "Last year we put up some good fights against DC, but a lot of that was built on individual prowess and the skill and ability of a few players," Lewsey said.
"This was a team performance and our boys ought to be really pleased. It was definitely the best performance since I have been here, it is just a little frustrating we didn't win it."
Andrew Jones, the director of sport at DC, said his side were "lucky" to be returning back up the Sheikh Zayed Road with a win. "Every time we play against BSAK we have a highly competitive game, and it was just the same tonight," Jones said.
"We just have the knack at the moment of winning these games, which is fortunate for us, but this time we definitely did not deserve it."
Lewsey believes the high standard of competition that will be a given at Rosslyn Park next month will not be beyond his players. "If you are inspired you can really compete against anyone," he said. "I am really pleased with the lads and we can do it."
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