Navy Through to Dubai Final
The RN VII defeated CGS Old Boys 28 – 7 earlier today in the Semi Finals of the Dubai International Overseas Sevens. CGS, also known as Llanelli Scarlets academy are an established sevens side, which goes to show the level at which the Navy team are now playing. However they still have one more mountain to climb when they meet the Pyranees, who are the holders, in the final. This is due to be played at 13:20 GMT. In the International Trophy New Zealand suffered a shock exit to Fiji at the Quarter Finals. England played an abrasive Argentinian side in their QF winning 24 -12. The semi finals line up as Fiji v South Africa and England v Manu Samoa. The Dubai Sevens is one of the world’s premier sevens tournament and is actually eleven tournaments in one. The premier tournament is the International Trophy, this is the first leg of the iRB World Sevens Series and England are the current holders of the Emirates Trophy. There are ten other categories of competition which include the International Invitation as the second level tournament and the event that the RNRU have entered the International Overseas. This is the third ranked tournament. Now in its 37th year the Emirates Airline Dubai Rugby Sevens attracts more than 12,000 overseas visitors to watch the 2000 players from 150 different teams taking part. Furthermore broadcasters will beam more than 70 hours of television to 120 different countries, not bad return for the small group of British ex-pats who, in 1966, founded the Dubai Exiles club. Of note 2005 is the ten anniversary of the tournament being played on grass when it is also considered that a 30,000 seat stadium is temporarily constructed each year it gives you some idea how popular the tournament has now become. Out but not Down Though the focus of attention has been on the RN VII competing in the Dubai Sevens there was also a second Navy team in the same tournament. The Naval Medicals attending their third consecutive Dubai Sevens were hoping to build on their good showing of 2004 when after winning two of their pool matches they lost in the QF to Pyranees who went on to win the tournament. This year, unfortunately, saw a depleted team struggle on day one and entering the plate competition winless they were despatched from the competition by Clyde & Co. The Naval Medicals will no doubt bounce back and strive for that elusive semi-final place in 2006.