The Season Gets Underway This Friday!

The Season Gets Underway This Friday!

MRFC travel to Doha on Friday morning to take on Doha 2s in Qatar. The season starts following a raft of changes to the structure of rugby in the Gulf. Muscat find themselves competing in the Gulf Conference alongside Doha 2s, Kuwait, Saudi Select and Bahrain Select.

With Muscat having played 16 league games last season, the new structure gives more time off for the lads and pits the team against a more level playing field. Although the first game maybe on Friday, pre-season started for Muscat at the beginning of June, with Horizon Fitness Oman supporting the lads by offering free Horizon Fitness The Engine Room to get in shape.
Rugby training started early August, and Muscat have been working hard refining and working on skills that it is fair to say have been lacking in recent years. The introduction of new head coach Steve Holohan has made a huge difference to the atmosphere in training and everyone is getting something out of each session. Numbers have been good, with an average of 20-25 attendees, but we are always looking for more people, experienced or first timers, for more information please message the Facebook Page.

Back to Friday’s game and Muscat travel to Doha with a relatively fit squad. As usual visa issues play their part and unfortunately new forward Louis Domenico Oosthuizen won’t be able to make his debut as the green mumba strikes again!! Up front Muscat have a wealth of experience with Ronan Glennon, Jamie Houston, Karl Rasmussen and Joey Maniel all ready to kick start another, and for some of them potentially a last season for Muscat Rugby. Last year’s player of the year Brady Hern is in the squad alongside Zak Harper, Stoney Steenkamp and Macdara Ó Ciardha.
In the backs, there is a wealth of pace, not something usually attributed to Muscat, with Dillan Karelse joining the lads for his first away trip, Guillaume Backé, Aaron Milmeister, Saleh Al Busaidi, Clement Montazeau, Choco Dejean, Benjamin Cullum and Pete Maxton will all be competing for starting spots in the backline. Abdullah Deebabi and Julien Pineau travel for the first time with the team and will be looking forward to making their debuts on Friday.

There is a strong look to the Muscat bench, and thankfully some subs, which wasn’t always the case last year, where Alex Maxton and Phillip J Braban will start with both still recovering from long-term injuries and hoping to make an impact later in the match. The game will also see Gautier Rasnop play his last match for Muscat before he leaves in October, although struggling with a knee injury we’re sure to see him late on in the game taking the field for one last time!

Another new debutant to the Muscat Rugby family is Muna Noor Manufacturing & Trading LLC who become the Club’s platinum sponsor for the 2016 – 2017 season, we’re delighted to have them on board for the season and look forward to strengthening the partnership. Equally, the Club are extremely grateful and pleased to have re-signed up long-time Club sponsors Hamptons International & Partners LLC, OMAN, Engie and The Grand Hyatt Muscat – who’s sister hotel in Doha the lads will be trying not to ruin on Friday night.
Best of luck to the boys travelling and we look forward to welcoming them home with the win!