Preview: Treviso v Dragons

Date published: September 22 2016

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Treviso will need to bounce back when they host the Dragons at Stadio Comunale di Monigo on Friday.

The Italian club took a massive 64-10 hiding against the Ospreys last weekend and will need to use their home-field advantage against their next Welsh opponents to secure a win.

Treviso have made a number of changes for this week's clash.

In the back three Jayden Hayward replaces Luke McLean in the 15 jersey, as McLean shifts to wing with Angelo Esposito replacing David Odiete in the 14 shirt.

At scrum-half Giorgio Bronzini will start ahead of Edoardo Gori who drops out of the squad completely.

In the loose forwards Dean Budd moves from six to eight with Francesco Minto taking his place at the side of the scrum.

In the second-row Marco Fuser starts in the four jersey ahead of Filippo Gerosa, with Gerosa dropping to the bench. And in the front-row there is a complete overhaul as Simone Ferrari, Ornel Gega and Nicola Quaglio replace the trio of Tiziano Pasquali, Roberto Santamaria and Alberto De Marchi.

Meanwhile, Dragons head coach Kingsley Jones has named Wales international wing Hallam Amos as skipper. The 21-year-old will make his captaincy debut this week.

The wing commented: "It will be good, it's not often at 21 that you are a captain and I am looking forward to it. I don't think it will affect my game too much.

"I captained Gwent U14s so have a lot of experience in the role! But I have played under a lot of good captains now, Lions series winning captains (Sam Warburton and Alun Wyn Jones), Thomas Rhys Thomas, Lewis Evans.

"I have seen the way they deal with things so hopefully I can bring that to the table."

In addition to the change of captaincy, there are seven changes to the starting XV that took on Munster at Rodney Parade last weekend.

Winger Ashton Hewitt, who returned to full fitness from a shoulder injury a few weeks ago, gets his first start of the 2016/17 season. He joins the back three alongside wing Amos and full-back Carl Meyer.

The centre partnership also sees a change as Tyler Morgan is joined by Adam Warren. Fly-half Angus O’Brien retains his place in the team whilst there is a switch at scrum-half as Charlie Davies gets the nod.

A change is made in the front-row with tighthead prop Lloyd Fairbrother joining loosehead prop Sam Hobbs and hooker Rhys Buckley. The second-row includes Cory Hill, who replaces Nick Crosswell, with Rynard Landman while the back-row sees flankers James Thomas and Nic Cudd come in alongside number eight Ed Jackson.

Form: Treviso's most recent victory in the Guinness PRO12 was 22-21 at home to Connacht in round 21 last season. Treviso have scored at least one try in every first team game they have played since last November. Newport Gwent Dragons have won just once in the Guinness PRO12 since the end of January: 11-6 at home to Zebre on 9 September, whilst they have not been victorious on the road in the Championship since their trip to Treviso in March 2015. The two sides each won their respective home game when they met last season. Dragons have triumphed just twice before at Stadio Monigo: in the European Champions Cup in December 2007 and in the Guinness PRO12 on 28 March 2015.

The teams:

Treviso: 15 Jayden Hayward, 14 Angelo Esposito, 13 Tommaso Benvenuti, 12 Alberto Sgarbi (c), 11 Luke McLean, 10 Tommaso Allan, 9 Giorgio Bronzini, 8 Dean Budd, 7 Marco Lazzaroni, 6 Francesco Minto, 5 Filo Paulo, 4 Marco Fuser, 3 Simone Ferrari, 2 Ornel Gega, 1 Nicola Quaglio
Replacements: 16 Luca Bigi, 17 Alberto De Marchi, 18 Cherif Traore, 19 Filippo Gerosa, 20 Abraham Steyn, 21 Tito Tebaldi, 22 Ian McKinley, 23 David Odiete

Dragons: 15 Carl Meyer, 14 Ashton Hewitt, 13 Tyler Morgan, 12 Adam Warren, 11 Hallam Amos (c), 10 Angus O’Brien, 9 Charlie Davies, 8 Ed Jackson, 7 Nic Cudd, 6 James Thomas, 5 Rynard Landman, 4 Cory Hill, 3 Lloyd Fairbrother, 2 Rhys Buckley, 1 Sam Hobbs
Replacements: 16 Thomas Rhys Thomas, 17 Thomas Davies, 18 Craig Mitchell, 19 Matthew Screech, 20 Harri Keddie, 21 Luc Jones, 22 Sam Beard, 23 Geraint Rhys Jones

Date: Friday, September 23
Venue: Stadio Monigo
Kick-off: 21:05 local (19:05 GMT)
Referee: Johnny Lacey (Ireland)
Assistant Referees: Sean Gallagher (Ireland), Peter Fitzgibbon (Ireland)

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