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Percy Montgomery returned home to South Africa after a 3 year stint in NewportThe Dragons underwent many changes during the close season with the departure of Mike Ruddock and Clive Griffiths to the national scene the hunt for a new Dragons coach began. Declan Kidney, Irish assistant coach and formerly of Munster was given the top job. After signing the contract a position became available with Leinster and, deciding that it would be wiser to be near his family, Declan left The Dragons. The search was started up again.

The Dragons turned to former rugby league World Cup winning coach Chris Anderson and Leigh Jones, fresh from clinching the Welsh Premiership with Newport, was installed as his assistant.

The appointment of Anderson was met with mixed feelings, considered by all to be a bold move, some saw it as one that could easily backfire, while others lauded the decision as a potential stroke of genius. The jury was out.

Pre season was a series of fitness tests and full time training for the players. Early friendly fixture results were not in the Dragons favour: losses to Northampton and a Gwent Region Select XV preceded a convincing and confidence boosting 30-7 victory over Ulster in Ulster

The Dragons had a bye in the first week of the Celtic League before travelling to the Arms Park to face Cardiff Blues. Despite dominating the first half The Dragons were unable to convert their pressure into points and charged down kicks saw Blues claw their way back into the match. A strong defensive display by the Blues denied Dragons on numerous occasions and they lost their first competitive match of the season.

After that match The Dragons began to build momentum and confidence winning matches against The Scarlets at fortress Rodney Parade and away at Glasgow followed. The Dragons also beat a star studded Leinster team clinching a bonus point for scoring four tries as they did the previous week up in Scotland. It was then a trip to Ravenhill where they dispatched Ulster in clinical fashion before a tricky match at The Borders saw the Dragons clinch their fifth win of the season. Ideal preparation for this year's Heineken Cup campaign.

However, The Dragons assault on Europe did not get off to the best of starts, losing at home to Newcastle Falcons in a match that was played in atrocious conditions. The Dragons rallied the following week and travelled to Murrayfield to face Edinburgh who they beat 13-17 to keep their Heineken Cup aspirations burning.

The Dragons returned to Celtic League business with a match against leaders The Ospreys and in a hard fought match, inflicting the first defeat of the season on the high flyers. However, since that match the Dragons have not being roaring. Missing players on international duty they have slumped to a loss against Munster before surrendering their home record to Edinburgh.

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Friday September 30

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Rodney Parade, Newport

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