Newport vs Northampton LV= Cup preview

Newport Gwent Dragons have named a new half back combination for their Anglo Welsh LV=Cup clash against Aviva Premiership club Northampton Saints.

Dan Evans starts at number ten alongside experienced Wayne Evans who has his first start for the Dragons after a back injury.

Wayne stated, “It’s good to be back playing at Rodney Parade with my fisrt competitive start this season.”

“I look forward to playing alongside Dan Evans and in front of the Dragons faithful.”

Included in the team are Hugh Gustafson, Owen Evans, Adam Jones, Nic Cudd and young gun Ieuan Jones, all retain their places as starting forwards. Following these, captain Ashley Smith reverts back to his usual position at number twelve, after coming on as a replacement outside half against Bath.

Tom Prydie also steps in at number fifteen, and he is replacing Hallam Amos who is injured.

Director of rugby Jim Mallinder is under no illusions as to the challenge facing the Northampton Saints team and Sunday’s game is the Saints’ first visit to Rodney Parade since October 2006.

With the last-gasp Round 1 loss to Harlequins still fresh in his mind, Mallinder says that the Saints have plenty of points to prove this weekend.

“We’ve never taken the LV= Cup lightly and Sunday is going to be no different,” he said. “It’s never easy to play in Wales, but we’re going to be up for it and I’m looking for an 80-minute performance to get us back to winning ways.

Sunday’s game is Phil Dowson’s hundredth in the black, green and gold. The back rower joined from Newcastle in the summer of 2009 and became the first Saint to lift a major domestic trophy when he led the team to LV= Cup success in March 2010.

Mallinder added that Dowson had been an important player during the past three-and-a-half years.

“Phil has established himself not just as one of our senior players but also one of the best players in his position in the country,” he said. “That he has reached his century of appearances in just over three years shows his durability and consistency, and I’d like to congratulate him on achieving the milestone.”

Match : Newport vs Northampton Saints
Date : Sunday 18 November 2012
Venue : 15.15
Kick Off : Rodney Parade
Live on: S4C


Newport Dragons: 15 Tom Prydie, 14 Will Harries, 13 Pat Leach, 12 Ashley Smith (c), 11 Tonderai Chavhanga, 10 Dan Evans, 9 Wayne Evans, 8 Tom Brown. 7 Nic Cudd, 6 Ieuan Jones, 5 Rob Sidoli, 4 Adam Jones, 3 Dan Way, 2 Hugh Gustafson, 1 Owen Evans.

Replacements: 16 Steve Jones, 17 Phil Price, 18 Nathan Buck, 19 Ian Nimmo, 20 Lewis Evans, 21 Jonathan Evans, 22 Lewis Robling, 23 Jack Dixon.

Northampton Saints 15 Tom May, 14 Ken Pisi, 13 Dom Waldouck, 12 Luther Burrell, 11 Jamie Elliott, 10 Ryan Lamb, 9 Lee Dickson, 8 GJ Van Velze, 7 Phil Dowson, 6 Calum Clark (c), 5 Mark Sorenson, 4 Samu Manoa, 3 Paul Doran Jones, 2 Mike Haywood, 1 Alex Waller.

Replacements: 16 Ross Mcmillan, 17 Ethan Waller, 18 Brian Mujati, 19 Rhys Oakley, 20 Ben Nutley, 21 Martin Roberts, 22 Scott Armstrong, 23 Tom Collins.

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