x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 22 July 2017

How a 'fat winger' scored winning try at Dubai

I have been butchered for my mess in the final last year for the past 12 months from every quarter, so I had to play again this year to put it right.

Graham Brown

There are two things you get to do playing rugby as an amateur in the Gulf, which you would never get the chance of anywhere else in the world.

The first is an away trip to Kuwait, where you play on sand and get showered under a pipe. The other is one which many people who have played at a far higher standard will never get to do, and that is play in front of 40,000 people at the Dubai Rugby Sevens.

I was able to do it as part of the Dubai Hurricanes side who won the Gulf Veterans competition on Saturday.

It is huge running out there. It is nerve-racking.

There is just one big din coming from the crowd, but every so often when the play stops I will hear, "Go on, fat winger."

Last year was the first time I had qualified to play in the Vets, and I messed up in the last minute of the final.

I have been butchered for it for the past 12 months from every quarter, so I had to play again this year to put it right.

This time I scored the winning try, intercepting on the halfway line and running in unopposed. I was shattered by the time I got to the line and had to go off two minutes later.

So: demons exorcised. I am never, ever playing again now because if I messed up again I would not have the legs to play for another year.

 

Graham Brown, a former Arabian Gulf international, plays on the wing for the Dubai Hurricanes second XV. He spoke to Paul Radley.