Friday, May 14, 2010

FIRST RUGBY TEST: Lebanon and Jordan

Lebanon v Jordan in Dubai



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I am awaiting details of both these teams, newcomers to the stage of international rugby. It is no coincidence that these two teams meet in Dubai as a curtain-raiser for the Korea v Arabian Gulf Asia5Nations test match. The occasion marks the 41st and last test match to be played by the Arabian Gulf Rugby Union. The union will disband. The present nations in the gulf will emerge as rugby identities in their own rights in time. Syria is already formed. Bahrain, Kuwait, United Arab Emirates will quickly form, then we should see Oman and Saudi Arabia follow. The first clash today signifies the end of an era and the starting of a new one.

Jordan failed to turn up to their first international 15s tournament last year in Uzbekistan. However they are ready for this encounter. There is sadly no information on the web address

The Beirut Phoenicians was the only club in Lebanon from 1995 to 2004. In that year a new was formed, the Jamhour Black Lions. The Lebanon coach is Robbie Yule, a New Zealander. The Lebanese web site also says Lebanon will play Syria in a test match 21 May. But sadly no team list posting

GWC Rugby Rankings do not apply but these two nations will join the Asia Table after this match.

Prediction: Lebanon look to have the longer established clubs and a Kiwi coach. What else do you need? I'll say Lebanon by 10 points.

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