Elliot Dee delighted to have ended wait for Dragons debut
8:01am Tuesday 15th October 2013 in Sport
TEENAGE Newport Gwent Dragons hooker Elliot Dee says he's ready if needed against Bath after the relief of finally making his regional debut, writes Chris Kirwan.
The 19-year-old came off the bench in the first half of last Friday's 50-8 win against Mogliano in the Amlin Challenge Cup.
He was introduced earlier than anticipated after Sam Parry was forced off with concussion in the 25th minute, an injury that will be monitored this week ahead of Saturday's trip to the Rec.
Dee made an immediate impact after coming on when his first throw at the lineout led to training ground move that ended with scrum-half Jonathan Evans darting over.
The Wales Under-20s starlet went on to impress in the set piece and the loose, demonstrating why he has been tipped as one to watch by coaching staff at Rodney Parade for a number of seasons.
"It was great," said the Newbridge man. "I was really nervous before I got on but I found my feet and loved every minute of it.
"I was expecting just to have a bit of time off the bench in the second half but Sam went off early and I really enjoyed it for an hour.
"It's been a while coming and it's a big weight off my shoulders to play that first game and see what it's like.
"Bath would be another step up but we'll just see how Sam is and I'll enjoy my rugby wherever I play this weekend."
Dee started the final of the Junior World Championship with Wales Under-20s but has had to bide his time for the Dragons, waiting in line behind Rhys Thomas, Parry and Hugh Gustafson.
But he featured prominently for Bedwas and has relished honing his skills with set piece coach Steve Jones as a fully-fledged member of the region's first-team squad.
"It's been a really good season so far," said Dee. "I've had game time with Bedwas in the Premiership and I'm in with the boys full-time now.
"I feel comfortable and ready to play my part. It's been great to have Jabba (Jones) there because I worked a lot with him last season and he understands what it's like for a young hooker."
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