x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 28 July 2017

Late Steve Smith try earns Dubai Hurricanes third title

The Hurricanes beat Doha 20-15 in a dramatic finale to win the West Asia rugby union play-off final.

Doha 15 // Dubai Hurricanes 20

DOHA // Steve Smith, the veteran three-quarter, scored a try in the dying minutes to hand Dubai Hurricanes a dramatic victory over Doha in the West Asia rugby union play-off final this afternoon.

The effects of a 5am start and a 7.30am flight to Qatar looked to have taken its toll on the Hurricanes when they found themselves 15-13 down with just two minutes remaining.

But Smith found his way over after a spell of pressure by the forwards to clinch their third trophy of the season for the Dubai club.

The try was a fairy-tale one for Smith who, according to coach Steve Holohan, has now played his last game at this level.

He is, though, expected to turn out for the newly-formed UAE team against Sri Lanka next month in their first match since the Arabian Gulf disbanded.

The Hurricanes had found themselves 13-3 up at half-time thanks to a try from three-quarter Harry Woods, five points from the boot of James Tometski and a smartly-taken drop goal from Tom Goodhew.

Inspired by their impressive pair of half-backs, Doha came roaring back in the second-half to score 12 unanswered points but they saw the tie dramatically snatched away from them by Smith.

"This team never gives up and are always pulling it out the hat," Holohan said. Since replacing Brian Allen in December, Holohan has led the team to glory in the UAE Premiership and Dubai Rugby Sevens title.

kaffleck@thenational.ae