Dubai Dragons shocked the defending champions and city rivals Hurricanes 13-0 to make a strong start to the new league season on Friday. Tim Naulis scored a try and Henry Connell made the conversion and fired a couple of penalties after a scoreless first half. The Dragons captain James Wellings credited the success to his side applying pressure on their opponents throughout the game.
"We had a good second half," he said. "We managed to provide good ball to the backs they began to move and create the scoring opportunities. "It was a good solid performance and we can take this game forward hopefully. We knew what we wanted to achieve from the onset. "We wanted to establish control through quality possession and once we had that under control, our game pattern was to open things out."
The Hurricanes were without six players, who were on duty for the Arabian Gulf Sevens team, and lost fly half Duncan Murray with a broken ankle, but winger Graham Brown said that was no excuse for the result. "It was a tight game," said Brown. "But we were always under pressure from the Dragons. "They played better on the night and deserved to win. We missed some of our players and so did they. It sort of evened out for both teams. It was also our first game and this was a stark reminder of what lies ahead for us this season.
"I believe we will be a stronger unit when those who were on the sevens duty return to the side." The Dragons can now go with confidence when they play the Dubai Exiles in their next match, while the Hurricanes will have to raise their game when they try to bounce back in their clash with Doha. @Email:firstname.lastname@example.org