THE Dragons enjoyed a bonus point win against the Southern Kings in the Guinness PRO14 last night. Here are five things from the 29-13 success at Rodney Parade.

1: Selection policy vindicated

Bernard Jackman and his coaches opted to leave their seniors in Wales while giving opportunities to fringe players at Ulster in round four.

They didn’t take their chance in a 52-25 hammering in Belfast and a well-rested first team came back for the Kings.

That heaped the pressure on to not only win but win comfortably and they did that – the five-point haul backed up the selection decision and now they have a six-day turnaround to go again versus Cardiff Blues in the capital.

2: Back row on song

It’s last men standing in the back row at the moment but the trio of James Thomas, Ollie Griffiths and James Benjamin, the only fit seniors on the roster, produced a strong display.

Too much pressure is on Griffiths to provide some dynamism and physicality but against the Kings they worked well as a unit with Thomas getting through plenty of the grunt work while Benjamin adds some classy touches.

The openside, who is playing in the 8 jersey at the moment, is not the biggest of ball carriers but his skills in the open field are worthy of a back.

However,the triumvirate will still need to go up another level in the blood and thunder of a Welsh derby.

Oh, and spare a thought for 20-year-old Aaron Wainwright, who must wait for his Dragons debut after being left stranded with his bib off as the clock passed 80 minutes.

Like teenage flankers Max Williams and Lennon Greggains, his time will come shortly.

3: Glorious Gav

The signing of Gavin Henson raised a few eyebrows, not because of questions of his ability just about whether he was over the hill.

However, he has played in 320 of 400 minutes in the Guinness PRO14 and oozed class against the Kings.

While others struggled with the slippy conditions on a rainy night in Newport, Henson took it in his stride and possessed a coolness to help the young three-quarters around him.

The former Wales and Lions playmaker always has time on the ball and in the second half produced one sublime pick up from his bootlaces only for Thretton Palamo to drop the following pass.

With wonderful game management, Henson will be a key figure on his return to the Arms Park and Liberty Stadium in October.

4: Second-half disappointment

In the post-match press conference Jackman was swift to point out that the Dragons let things slip in the second half.

They didn’t build on Elliot Dee’s second try that clinched the bonus point and allowed the Kings to come back into the game and score a rather too easy driving lineout try.

The horrendous weather was a mitigating factor but the Dragons need to be more ruthless when on top and had the Scarlets, Leinster, Ulster, Munster, Glasgow or the Cheetahs, the standout teams in the PRO14, been in the same position then it would have been a hammering.

Standards slipped and at the moment Jackman doesn’t have the bench to turn to in order to up the tempo.

5: Much, much tougher tests lie ahead

The Connacht and Southern Kings games were must-win encounters for the Dragons on home soil and they did just that with nine points from a possible 10.

However, the Kings were as poor as you will see this season after being thrown together in a short space of time – they will get better and it should be a tighter contest in Port Elizabeth next year.

The Dragons now turn their attention to a tough October on the road with games in Cardiff, Newcastle, Moscow and Swansea.

After two seasons of derby whitewashes, a success against either Cardiff Blues or the Ospreys would make their biggest statement of the new era.