Planet Rugby

Preview: Dragons v Treviso

07th February 2013 09:17

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Lewis Evans Dragons 2012

Captain: Lewis Evans

Dan Evans, Jonathan Evans and Lewis Evans return to the Dragons fold for Friday's RaboDirect PRO12 clash with Treviso at Rodney Parade.

Within the pack the latter Evans is joined by prop Phil Price, who returns to the side. Nathan Buck, who returns from injury, and Nic Cudd, who did well against London Welsh, also earns a start.

Young guns Jack Dixon and Ieuan Jones both retain their places, in the regional team, whilst Hallam moves to bench alongside Josh Tyler.

The Dragons have won back-to-back first team games against Ospreys and London Welsh in the LV= Cup. The Welshmen have won three of their last four encounters against Italian sides.

Meanwhile, Treviso have been forced to make some changes due to Italy's clash with Scotland.

Franco Smith can, however, count on the returns of duo Robert Barbieri and Valerio Bernaḅ.

In the starting line-up, second-row Corniel Van Zyl will captain the team while Giovanni Maistri is at hooker. Former Lions player Doppies La Grange is named at outside centre.

Form: Dragons have won back to back first team games against Ospreys and London Welsh in the Anglo-Welsh Cup. In the RaboDirect PRO12 Dragons' solo victory in their last eight contests was 14-3 at home to Connacht in round nine. The Welshmen have won three of their last four encounters with Italian opponents in all competitions. Benetton Treviso have won three of their last five matches in all competitions, whilst their three game winning run in the RaboDirect PRO12 ended at Glasgow in round 13. Treviso's most recent win outside of Italy was on 5 October against Edinburgh at Murrayfield. The Italians have a won 4, lost 2 record against Welsh regions so far this season. Benetton's only loss in their last six matches with the Dragons was 33-10 at Rodney Parade in the PRO12 on 3 April 2011.

The teams:

Dragons: 15 Dan Evans, 14 Will Harries, 13 Pat Leach, 12 Jack Dixon, 11 Tom Prydie, 10 Steffan Jones, 9 Jonathan Evans, 8 Ieuan Jones, 7 Nic Cudd, 6 Lewis Evans (c), 5 Adam Jones, 4 Ian Nimmo, 3 Nathan Buck, 2 Hugh Gustafson, 1 Phil Price.
Replacements: 16 Sam Parry, 17 Owen Evans, 18 Nathan Williams, 19 Josh Tyler, 20 Jevon Groves, 21 Wayne Evans, 22 Ashley Smith, 23 Hallam Amos.

Treviso: 15 Brendan Williams, 14 Christian Loamanu, 13 Gideon La Grange, 12 Luca Morisi, 11 Ludovico Nitoglia, 10 Alberto Di Bernardo, 9 Fabio Semenzato, 8 Robert Barbieri, 7 Valerio Bernaḅ, 6 Dean Budd, 5 Corniel Van Zyl (capt), 4 Marco Fuser, 3 Jacobus Roux, 2 Giovanni Maistri, 1 Ignacio Fernandez-Rouyet.
Replacements: 16 Franco Sbaraglini, 17 Matteo Muccignat, 18 Pedro Di Santo, 19 Enrico Ceccato, 20 Filippo Giusti, 21 Giulio Toniolatti, 22 James Ambrosini, 23 Andrea Pratichetti.

Date: Friday, February 8
Kick-off: 19:30
Venue: Rodney Parade
Referee: David Wilkinson (Ireland)

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