Cardiff Blues v Newport Gwent Dragons Preview

Ben Blair has been selected to start for the first time this season, and goes in search of a landmark 1000 points for Cardiff Blues.

Cardiff Blues’ nine game winning run came to an end at the hands of Leinster at the RDS on Saturday evening and they now face another difficult battle against local rivals Newport Gwent Dragons. Cardiff Blues Director of Rugby, David Young has selected his side and said,

“We welcome a few senior players back which is good news ahead of a big derby match.”

"Gethin Jenkins has recovered from his shoulder injury, Ben Blair from his knee injury, Paul Tito from his calf strain and Leigh Halfpenny’s lip has healed. So we are near full strength”

“I said at the start of the season we would make three or four changes for each match, and not rip the heart out of the team, and it’s the same this weekend.”

“It’s good to be able to give Ceri Sweeney some game time as he’s not played since the Exeter game as Dan Parks has played the last three matches for us.”

“Martyn Williams was rested last weekend, and Sam Warburton was not considered for this match after having a bang on shoulder against Leinster last Saturday, while Tom Brown was not considered and is out for two weeks after straining his knee in training.”

“John Yapp continues at tight head where he sees his long term future. John and the WRU requested it and we are happy with John’s decision. It gives him greater chance for international honours when you consider limited amount of high quality tight heads there are in Wales at the moment.”

With Ben Blair 's return to the starting fifteen he will be hoping to add to the 995 points he has racked up for Cardiff Blues since his debut season in 2006/7, including 292 points last season alone.

Cardiff Blues v Newport Gwent Dragons - Saturday 18 September 6.30pm kick off

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15 Ben Blair 14 Leigh Halfpenny 13 Casey Laulala 12 Tom Shanklin 11 Chris Czekaj 10 Ceri Sweeney 9 Richie Rees
8 Xavier Rush 7 Martyn Williams 6 Maama Molitika 5 Paul Tito (c) 4 Bradley Davies 3 Scott Andrews 2 T Rhys Thomas 1 Gethin Jenkins


16 Rhys Williams 17 Tafa’ao Filise 18 John Yapp 19 Deiniol Jones 20 Michael Paterson 21 Lloyd Williams 22 Dan Parks 23 Dafydd Hewitt


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