Amlin Challenge Cup Pool 2: Dragons v Bath preview
By Sam Drury - Follow on Twitter. Last Updated: 11/01/14 2:28pm
Andrew Coombs: Returns from a knee injury to captain the Dragons
The Dragons host Bath on Saturday with the visitors targeting a win that will see them confirmed as Pool 2 winners in the Amlin Challenge Cup.
The English side boast a perfect record of four wins from four in the competition this season with an impressive points difference of 135.
Meanwhile, the Dragons have won two and lost two from their fixtures and hold second place in the pool courtesy of having earned one bonus point more than third-placed Bordeaux-Begles.
Defeat would leave the Newport team needing to win at bottom side Mogliano in next week's final round of fixtures to be in with a chance second spot in the pool.
The previous meeting between the sides saw Bath come away 26-10 victors with Tom Heathcote kicking 16 points to pull his side clear after the first half ended 10 apiece.
The home side welcome back Tom Prydie for the first time since he picked up a hamstring injury playing for Wales during the Autumn Internationals, whilst captain Andrew Coombe has recovered from a knee injury to take his place in the second row.
The visitors make a total of 12 changes for the clash with Paul James assuming the captaincy. Anthony Watson will look to continue his scintillating form from full-back, as Tom Biggs and Rich Lane aim to use their pace and guile out wide to similar effect.
Gavin Henson starts at outside centre and the match-winner from October's reverse fixture, Heathcote, gets the nod at fly-half.
Dragons: 15 Evans, 14 Pewtner, 13 Wardle, 12 Smith, 11 Prydie, 10 Tovey, 9 Rees; 1 Evans, 2 Thomas, 3 Buck, 4 Coombs (c), 5 Sidoli, 6 Groves, 7 Cudd, 8 Faletau.
Replacements: 16 Dee, 17 Gustafson, 18 Way, 19 Screech, 20 I Jones, 21 L Jones, 22 S Jones, 23 Leach.
Bath: 15 Watson, 14 Lane, 13 Henson, 12 Devoto, 11 Biggs, 10 Heathcote, 9 Young; 1 James (c), 2 Guinazu, 3 Orlandi, 4 Day, 5 Caldwell, 6 Gilbert, 7 Fearns, 8 Houston.
Replacements: 16 Batty, 17 Perenise, 18 Palma Newport, 19 Garvey, 20 Mercer, 21 Roberts, 22 Joseph, 23 Banahan.
Amlin Challenge Cup week five 2013/14
Sale boosted their hopes of reaching the knockout stages of the Amlin Challenge Cup with a 21-3 triumph over Worcester.
London Irish know only a bonus-point victory will do against Lusitanos as they look to keep pace with Stade Francais.
Wasps face a crunch Amlin Challenge Cup fixture at Bayonne as the two top teams in Pool 4 go head-to-head.