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Preview: Treviso v Dragons

11th April 2014 13:36

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SKY_MOBILE Toby Faletau - Newport-Gwent Dragons

Taulupe Faletau: At eight for Dragons

Dragons boss Lyn Jones has made three changes to the side that faced Edinburgh last weekend for Saturday's clash with Treviso.

Jones has put his faith in the back-three who remain unchanged with Dan Evans at full-back, and Tom Prydie and Hallam Amos on the wings. The centre pairing of Pat Leach and Jack Dixon also remains intact. There has been one change in the half-backs as Jason Tovey keeps his place, and scrum-half Wayne Evans replaces Richie Rees who moves to the bench.

For the third time in a row Jones has put his trust in the same front-row utilising Phil Price, Wales U20 hooker Elliot Dee and experienced tighthead prop Duncan Bell. They are joined by a young second-row as Cory Hill steps in alongside Matthew Screech, in the absence of Andrew Coombs. Captain Lewis Evans retains his place at flanker in the back-row alongside Nic Cudd and British and Irish Lion Taulupe Faletau.

There have been four changes to the bench as Rob Sidoli, Richie Rees, Kris Burton and Ross Wardle join Sam Parry, Owen Evans, Bruce Douglas and Jevon Groves.

Meanwhile, Treviso skipper Antonio Pavanello is partnered in the second-row by Corniel van Zyl, with the back-row comprising Marco Filippucci, Paul Derbyshire and Robert Barbieri.

Mat Berquist has enjoyed an impressive PRO12 season with the boot, and starts at fly-half alongside Italy scrum-half Tobias Botes, while highly-rated flyers Angelo Esposito and Michele Campagnaro - who announced their respective presences emphatically during the Six Nations - start on the left wing and at outside centre.

The experienced Luke McLean is named at full-back, with the midfield bolstered by the considerable bulk of Christian Loamanu at inside centre.

Form: Treviso's solo victory in their last seven PRO12 encounters was 20-16 at home to Edinburgh on 29 March.Treviso have not beaten a Welsh opponent this season, the closest they came was a 26-26 draw at home to Cardiff Blues on 30th November. The Dragons have won only one PRO12 match since round 11: 24-23 at home to Glasgow on 23 February. Dragons are unbeaten in their last eight games against Italian opponents since they lost in Treviso in December 2012. The two sides have met on six previous occasions in the PRO12 with the Italians having the edge by four wins to two, whilst Dragons' only previous victory at Stadio Monigo came on 8 December 2007 in the European Cup.

The teams:

Treviso: 15 Luke McLean, 14 Ludovico Nitoglia, 13 Michele Campagnaro, 12 Christian Loamanu, 11 Angelo Esposito, 10 Mat Berquist, 9 Tobias Botes, 8 Robert Barbieri, 7 Paul Derbyshire, 6 Marco Filippucci, 5 Corniel Van Zyl, 4 Antonio Pavanello (c), 3 Lorenzo Cittadini, 2 Leonardo Ghiraldini, 1 Alberto De Marchi
Replacements: 16 John Maistri, 17 Matthew Muccignat, 18 Ignacio Fernandez-Rouyet, 19 Valerio Bernabo, 20 Manoa Vosawai, 21 Alberto Sgarbi, 22 Fabio Semenzato, 23 James Ambrosini.

Dragons: 15 Dan Fish, 14 Tom Prydie, 13 Pat Leach, 12 Jack Dixon, 11 Hallam Amos, 10 Jason Tovey, 9 Wayne Evans, 8 Taulupe Faletau, 7 Nic Cudd, 6 Lewis Davies (c), 5 Matthew Screech, 4 Cory Hill, 3 Duncan Bell, 2 Elliot Dee, 1 Phil Price
Replacements: 16 Sam Parry, 17 Owen Evans, 18 Bruce Douglas, 19 Rob Sidoli, 20 Jevon Groves, 21 Richie Rees, 22 Kris Burton, 23 Ross Wardle.

Date: Saturday 12th April
Venue: Stadio Monigo
Kick-off: 19:00 local, (18:00 BST)
Referee: George Clancy (Ireland)
Assistant referees: Stefano Traversi, Giorgio Sgardalo (both Italy)
TMO: Alan Falzone (Italy)

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