Only a few hours after their men’s team retained the Gulf Men’s League title, it was double joy for Dubai Hurricanes as they swept aside Emirates Firebirds 52-0 to add the Gulf Women’s trophy to their burgeoning collection.
Alexandrea Cook was the star of the show, claiming a hat-trick of tries and a total of 32 points in an impressive individual performance for a well drilled Hurricanes outfit. As well as causing a constant threat with her pace, Cook’s kicking also proved a significant factor with Firebirds struggling to secure possession from her well placed restarts.
It was Cook herself who benefitted from hesitation in fielding the opening kick off, leading to an early score under the posts. That set the tone for a first half where tries came at regular intervals – Paula McCarthy’s score on the stroke of half time putting the game beyond reach at 31-0 at the break.
Problems at the restart and the breakdown made it difficult for the Firebirds to keep hold of possession for long periods in the game, their brightest moments coming with a second half attack which set Jasmine Singh free down the touchline only to be dragged down when entering the 22.
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The second half also saw the pick of Hurricanes tries with Cook again the beneficiary but the score coming after a number of slick handling combinations in a length of the field move with Sian Williams to the fore. Williams had herself earlier got on the scoresheet, with the additional tries coming from Harriet Witty and Jade Cunningham.
Despite their disappointment at the one-sided nature of the final, the Firebirds will take pride in their determination to compete and tackle until the final whistle, and can reflect on another successful tournament after beating a competitive Abu Dhabi Harlequins side 15-14 in their semi-final to reach a second final in three years.
For the Hurricanes, they will now claim to have usurped Dubai Knights Eagles (who they defeated in their semi-final) as the number one side in the UAE women’s game and will go in to the latter rounds of the Women’s Sevens Series as very much the team to beat.
Dubai Hurricanes: Alexandrea Cook, Bridie Johnson, Danielle Dempsey, Hannah Carey, Harriet Witty, Jade Cunningham, Minal Tailor, Paloma Adorisio-Hughes, Paula McCarthy, Sarah Keating, Shelley Forde, Sian Williams
Emirates Firebirds: Belinda Uyassi-Holloway, Carmen Gea Ortiz, Josephine Taofinuu, Kathryn McClay, Maria Picco Palacio, Marnie Howard, Melisa Lee, Monique van der Bank, Olivia Collins, Sydnee Chang, Nicole Bailey, Jasmine Singh