The Dubai Hurricanes formed in the autumn of 1999. For our first few years we operated purely as a senior’s social club arranging friendly matches with the established club sides in the UAE and entering 7’s and 10’s tournaments throughout the Gulf region and Asia. Due to the dedication of many volunteers the club has grown significantly during our short history and we have witnessed huge success and development both on and off the pitch.
In 2007, we won the Gulf Cup, the Gulf League, and the Dubai 7’s tournament. In the 2010-11 season, we have won the first ever Grand Slam in the Middle East winning the UAE league, the Gulf Top 6 League, and the West-Asia Championship Final. With newly developed links with the Asia Pacific Dragons we now have a pathway for our best forward and back to play in the International World Series 10s competition held in Mauritius, Hing Kong and Toulouse. In the 2012-13 Season our Ladies squad also completed the Grand Slam in the Women’s Championship and this was repeated in the 2015-16 Season. Both a men and ladies squad has fielded players for the UAERF and before that in the AGRFU. Our Veterans section continues to grow and enjoy success having won the Gulf Veterans 10s Competition for the third success time in 2015 at the World Rugby Dubai 7s, resulting in them winning this competition 11 times out the 13 occasions it has been run.
Our Mini and Youth Section was established only in the autumn of 2007 and took part in the league half way through the 2008-09 season. Since then it continues to go from strength to strength. We pride ourselves on maintaining the basic rugby family culture, focusing more on development and growth than outright success, which in turn has brought us continued success on the field. Winning is not a necessity it’s a reward. Since 2005 we have managed to send squads from our U12 to U16 age groups on tour to Australia, Wales, Ireland, South Africa, Japan and Spain, and in 2016 Hong Kong, where the U16 Squad won the U16 International 7s Cup Competition. This led to 5 of the squad being selected to play with Asia Pacific Dragons in the inaugural U18 World Schools Rugby Festival held in Paarl, South Africa in March 2018, creating a development pathway to playing on the international stage.
We have an all-girls u8 – u12 squad affectionately titled the ‘Candy Canes’ that is growing each year, which feeds our u14-18 girl’s squad, following the pathway syllabus to ladies’ rugby providing a mixture of touch, ripper rugby and contact rugby formats.
In 2012 we opened the Dubai Rugby Academy available to all rugby players up to the age of 18. This has now evolved into a major facility in introducing UAE nationals into the game, with rugby ambassadors of ex-international players from both the southern and northern hemisphere countries. The aim of the academy is to provide both high performance and development training to national and expat players who want to further their game.
To celebrate our 15th year of playing rugby the club rebranded in 2013 to bring its image up to date and reflect its values of ‘respect’, sportsmanship and ‘family’. This was encapsulated with the development of our club mantra (seen on the left) which current and past members all contributed to. As we look to the future our focus of enjoying our rugby on and off the field will continue and we look forward to increasing our membership which as at the end of the 2015-16 stands at 823 playing members from 42 nations across the rugby world.
At the end of the 2015-16 we introduced a netball facility into the club for the mums and daughters of rugby players playing in the mini & youth section of the club. Open to players from U6 upwards these provides a complete family experience for club members who have sons and daughters wishing to play sport. We see this part of the club growing and, like our rugby section, eventually providing an academy facility for those players who wish to take their game further.