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Whats New With The UAE Community League?
- Al Ain Amblers 2s enter the league with their 1s resuming in the Conference
- Abu Dhabi Saracens 2s also join the Community League
- Abu Dhabi Harlequins aim to field both 3s and 4s sides in the Community League
- RAK Rugby to train on grass this year at Tower Links Golf Club
Dragons And Quins To Resume Rivalry?
Last season’s 2016/17 Community League came down to a straight shoot-out between Harlequins 3s and Dragons 3s, both of whom consistently headed the standings for the duration. The continued strength in depth boasted by the Quins set up is emphasised by their entry of a 4s side this year. However with city rivals Abu Dhabi Saracens 2s dropping down a division they can be expected to pose a significant threat having competed respectably at Conference level last year. Both RAK Rugby and 2015/16 champions Beaver Nomads have strengthened in the off season, (with the former leaving behind their sand pitch to train at new surrounds at Tower Links Golf Club) meaning this year’s Community league is shaping up to be an unpredictable and exciting affair.
What progress can UAE Shaheen expect?
The all Emirati Shaheen completed their second ever season of fifteen aside competition last year and while the league table shows only a solitary victory, the Shaheen will point to three of their number representing the UAE National Side in the Asia Rugby Championship over the summer as proof of the continuing growth of the game amongst the local population. Developing players for the National Team will continue to be the Shaheen’s primary objective this season (having introduced a new ‘Elite’ group to feed into the Shaheen from ages 16-19) but with an expanded Community league offering more opportunities for regular rugby, don’t be surprised to see the side taste victory on a more regular basis this year.
Article by: Huw Harrow