Jebel Ali Dragons Scrum Half Alex Lee talks dislocations, potato sack fashion and life with the Dragons in Dubai
Born: Hong Kong (But I’m not Chinese despite my last name!!!)
Club: Jebel Ali Dragons
Position: Scrum Half
Height: 178cm… Down hill, with the wind behind me.
“The club and all the boys in it have absolutely helped me. Whether they know it or not!”
Do you have any nicknames?
Just Al. Short for Alex but also because it’s my initials.
What do you get up to in your spare time?
Gym, paddle boarding, drink coffee, people watching, McGettigans, Barasti, Rock Bottoms and Netflix. I’ve just finished ‘The Sinner’ the other day. Although Jessica Biel is easy on the eye it’s pretty disturbing. Good though!
Do you have any phobias?
Seeing joint dislocations usually makes me feel sick.
What do you miss most about England?
Even after 5 years there’s something not right about going to work on a Sunday. I miss a good roast and a pint in a decent pub!
Who’d you like to be stuck in a lift with?
Jimmy Saville. Jim’ll fix it and get us out.
Who or what inspired you to play rugby?
I can’t remember initially but watching the likes of Lawrence Dallaglio, Neil Back, Mike Catt, Martin Johnson and a young Jonny Wilkinson etc back in 1998 definitely inspired me. I remember going down to Twickenham that year, which is a long way from Fleetwood, to watch England v Australia and remember the atmosphere being unreal.
If you could be one of your team-mates, who would it be?
Paul Hart. He’s an absolute stalwart, evergreen. He tried to retire this season but he’s just done 80mins in the front row for the 1s XV last weekend. Massive shout out to his wife for letting us have him back!
Who has the worst Dress sense?
Probably our Chairman, Quinney. Despite the constant abuse he likes to regularly don a t-shirt that can only be described as a potato sack. Although saying that there was a pair of purple loafers left at training one night but no one claimed them funnily enough.
Who do you listen to to get pumped for a match?
Usually something chilled like Ben Howard in the car on the way, then Artic Monkey’s in the changing rooms.
Who’s the tightest?
I’ve been told by Matty Henry’s girlfriend he’s pretty tight…
How’s life in Dubai?
People have this preconception of Dubai being very extravagant etc but it’s very much what you make of it. Expat rugby attracts people from so many different backgrounds that you may not otherwise meet out here and our club is very much a family, as cliche as that sounds. So being part of the Dragons makes life out here good. I also work with the UAE Military so this has taken me all over the UAE. Places that people otherwise wouldn’t go to and meeting some very interesting people.
What was the last brunch you went on?
Wanderlust. We’d just lost to ‘Canes the night before so needed to forget that!
Do you have any hidden talents?
Yeh rugby. I’m actually really good but keep it really well hidden.
What are the best things about Dragons?
As I mentioned before about us being a mix of people from different backgrounds, it has to be the people. Otherwise there’s no club. We have a great culture that has definitely evolved over the 5 seasons I’ve been involved.
Being an expat can be tough at times and when life throws some pretty sh*t things at you, it can be even harder. There’s a big awareness of mental health at the minute which I think is great, and I can honestly say that when I lost everything back home, the club and all the boys in it have absolutely helped me. Whether they know it or not. Having a culture that is inclusive of life off the pitch is so important and we’ve got that in abundance. You can guarantee there’s always buy-in whether it’s conditioning work in pre season or a Christmas brunch. There’s a lot of new faces this season and they have definitely become a great part of that. The kit Tsunami provide for us is pretty cool as well! Stops Quinney wearing his potato top for a day anyway!
Mr Lee… it’s been an absolute pleasure. [YR]