Dragons go for Burton against Ospreys

STARTING ROLE: Kris Burton

STARTING ROLE: Kris Burton

First published in Sport
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South Wales Argus: Photograph of the Author by

NEWPORT Gwent Dragons have brought Kris Burton in from the cold to start their Judgement Day clash against the Ospreys at the Millennium Stadium.

The 33-year-old former Italy fly-half will make his first start in the RaboDirect Pro12 since the two regions clashed at the Liberty Stadium last October.

Burton has played second fiddle to Jason Tovey since arriving at Rodney Parade on a two-year deal from Treviso last summer.

Tovey, who rejoined the Dragons following an ill-fated season with Cardiff Blues, made a superb start to the campaign but his form has flagged of late.

That has led to Burton, a replacement in last weekend's 45-27 loss to Trevison, getting a chance to pull the strings at the Millennium Stadium on Easter Sunday.

"Kris hasn't had the number of starts that he would have liked but has rolled his sleeves up and trained very hard," said director of rugby Lyn Jones.

"He did well when he came on against Treviso last weekend so deserves the chance to try and do it from the off. We are looking for him to perform well and provide Jason with some competition."

The Dragons make five other changes to the starting line-up for the Ospreys encounter, bringing in a quintet of internationals.

Hallam Amos moves to full-back to replace Ospreys-bound Dan Evans, who was at fault for a pair of tries against Treviso last weekend, with Will Harries taking his place on the wing while Richie Rees is recalled at scrum-half.

The pack is bolstered by the return of three seasoned campaigners – captain and lock Andrew Coombs, hooker Rhys Thomas and Fijian back row forward Netani Talei.

Exciting Wales Under-20s prospect Tyler Morgan is set for his Pro12 debut off the bench. The classy 18-year-old centre/wing has had a superb season with Newport in the Premiership and featured in the region's LV= Cup encounters with the Scarlets and London Wasps last autumn.

"Tyler has been playing excellently for Newport and looks to have a bright future in the game," said Jones. "He is an exciting talent and the quicker we get him involved the quicker he can fulfil his potential."

The Dragons are without a win in five games and are attempting to deny the Ospreys a clean sweep of the Welsh regions. Steve Tandy's men need a bonus point win to keep the heat on Glasgow.

Dragons: H Amos, T Prydie, P Leach, J Dixon, W Harries, K Burton, R Rees, P Price, R Thomas, D Bell, M Screech, A Coombs (captain), N Talei, L Evans, T Faletau. Replacements: S Parry, O Evans, B Douglas, C Hill, N Cudd, J Evans, J Tovey, T Morgan.

Ospreys: R Fussell, J Hassler, J Spratt, A Beck, H Dirksen, D Biggar, T Habberfield, D Jones, S Baldwin, A Jarvis, R Jones, A W Jones (captain), J King, J Tipuric, D Baker. Replacements: S Otten, N Smith, A Jones, T Ardon, S Lewis, T Tebaldi, S Davies, A Natoga.

Referee: Nigel Owens (WRU)

Comments (6)

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8:16pm Fri 18 Apr 14

Keith Barnett says...

Ospreys by 20
Ospreys by 20 Keith Barnett
  • Score: -3

1:04am Sat 19 Apr 14

davies_c14 says...

Ospreys by 30!
Ospreys by 30! davies_c14
  • Score: -2

8:11am Sat 19 Apr 14

hazellboy says...

I would say 20, but I suspect it will be because of a bad referee if you believe some of the posters on here, we have Nigel for this one and IMO h is the best in the game
I would say 20, but I suspect it will be because of a bad referee if you believe some of the posters on here, we have Nigel for this one and IMO h is the best in the game hazellboy
  • Score: -3

11:29am Sat 19 Apr 14

Robert Shillabeer says...

hazellboy wrote:
I would say 20, but I suspect it will be because of a bad referee if you believe some of the posters on here, we have Nigel for this one and IMO h is the best in the game
Yes he is about the best but even he makes an odd error or two, but bias no, hope he has a consistent day that's all we can ask for from the ref. I say a losing bonus point is on the cards as the Ospreys task of getting into the play-offs took a knock last night when Glasgow beat Ulster by a mile.
[quote][p][bold]hazellboy[/bold] wrote: I would say 20, but I suspect it will be because of a bad referee if you believe some of the posters on here, we have Nigel for this one and IMO h is the best in the game[/p][/quote]Yes he is about the best but even he makes an odd error or two, but bias no, hope he has a consistent day that's all we can ask for from the ref. I say a losing bonus point is on the cards as the Ospreys task of getting into the play-offs took a knock last night when Glasgow beat Ulster by a mile. Robert Shillabeer
  • Score: 1

4:20pm Sat 19 Apr 14

Caerleonboy says...

Nigel is one of the best refs around, but in the past we've had penalty tries awarded against us by him at the scrum, he's very fast to go under the posts. Hopefully with Duncan Bell our scrum will hold, otherwise we're in trouble.
Nigel is one of the best refs around, but in the past we've had penalty tries awarded against us by him at the scrum, he's very fast to go under the posts. Hopefully with Duncan Bell our scrum will hold, otherwise we're in trouble. Caerleonboy
  • Score: 2

12:57pm Sun 20 Apr 14

blackandamber says...

Watching Nigel will probably more interesting than watching the rugby.
Watching Nigel will probably more interesting than watching the rugby. blackandamber
  • Score: -1

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