x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 26 July 2017

Hurricanes at home against in-form Doha

Dubai Hurricanes return to the Gulf premiership action today to heal the wounds inflicted by the Dubai Dragons, who stunned the two-time champions last week.

ABU DHABI // Dubai Hurricanes return to the Gulf premiership action today to heal the wounds inflicted by the Dubai Dragons, who stunned the two-time champions last week. The Hurricanes are expected to be at full strength with the return of Sevens specialists Chris Gregory, Gerry Considine and Josh Sherin who did duty for the Arabian Gulf in the GPS Tri Nations. The back row forward Arron Brown also returns from an ankle injury he suffered in Sri Lanka last month.

They face Doha for whom Dubai hasn't been a happy hunting ground. Doha are unbeaten after a 56-10 mauling of Muscat and 30-20 result over Kuwait at home. But the Hurricanes have the home advantage. The Hurricanes captain Gregory said: "We couldn't get the start that we would have liked but this is an opportunity to bounce back. We have a young team and playing in the afternoon heat, I hope, will give as the advantage. Hopefully we can win this game and get our title defence back on track."

Gregory will miss the services of his dashing centre Duncan Murray who will be out of action for nearly five months after an ankle fracture in the opening match. But he is impressed with a newcomer, second row forward Greg Thompson. "Murray will be surely missed," added Gregory. "Greg's arrival is some consolation. He has impressed in training and we expect him to add more punch to the forwards." The Dragons will also be fancying their chance against the Exiles in today's other game in Dubai. The Exiles will have to guard against conceding penalties within range of Henry Connell. The former Otley fly-half had fired two penalties and a conversion in their 13-0 victory over the Hurricanes.

The Abu Dhabi Harlequins will hope to return with full points from Kuwait after the Exiles had run them down in the their last match. @Email:apassela@thenational.ae