HALLAM Amos believes a derby win in the capital tonight would send a message to the rest of the Guinness PRO14 that the Dragons are on the up, writes Chris Kirwan.

The Wales a has overcome a dead leg suffered in victory against the Southern Kings last week to take his place in the XV to face Cardiff Blues at the Arms Park (kick-off 7.35pm).

Amos, who shifts from wing to full-back in the absence of the injured Carl Meyer, has scored three tries so far this season after returning from a shoulder injury suffered while attempting to score for Wales against Australia last autumn.

He scored in the win against Connacht and then bagged a brace in last week’s 29-13 success against the Kings.

Those victories have some believing the Dragons head to the capital as favourites given the Blues have lost four from five and are suffering from off-field uncertainty.

Amos gives such an idea short shrift but stresses Bernard Jackman’s squad will make the short trip west with confidence.

“I doubt that [we are favourites], they are still at home and the calibre of player they have got in their team, they just need to gel for 10 minutes and they can run away and do damage to any team,” he said.

“I am sure we won’t be going in as favourites but it’s nice that we are on a bit of a level playing field.

“Winning two games at home to Connacht and the Kings has gone a little way [to changing perceptions] but that would pale in comparison to beating the Blues at their home ground in a Welsh derby. We will definitely go in confident.”

Amos has played in 18 league derbies since bursting onto the scene in 2011/12 but has been on the winning side just three times.

However, that record hasn’t dampened his enthusiasm for locking horns with neighbours.

“These are the games that everyone wants to play in. It will be near enough a full house I’d imagine and they are always good fun.

“I have gone to Cardiff and had some close defeats but we have won there before [in 2014], so it’s definitely doable.

“We won’t look at the results from last year, derbies are always a different kettle of fish and there will be some fireworks.”

Ashton Hewitt has overcome an ankle strain to feature on the right wing with Jared Rosser making his first regional start on the left.

Jackman, who was without 29 players for training at the start of the week, makes just four other changes to his matchday squad.

Hooker Liam Belcher is set for a Dragons debut against his old side from the bench with loosehead Luke Garrett, scrum-half Owain Leonard and wing/full-back Will Talbot Davies joining him as replacements.

Aaron Wainwright, a 20-year-old flanker who was an unused sub against the Kings, will hope to make his regional bow.

The Blues change seven from their defeat at Munster last weekend, bringing back Wales wing Alex Cuthbert, influential centre Rey Lee-Lo, scrum-half Lloyd Williams, hooker Kristian Dacey, locks Seb Davies and Damian Welch and flanker Josh Navidi.

Cardiff Blues: R Williams, A Cuthbert, R Lee-Lo, W Halaholo, T James, J Evans, L Williams (captain), B Thyer, K Dacey, T Filise, S Davies, D Welch, J Navidi, O Robinson, N Williams. Replacements: M Rees, C Domachowski, K Assiratti, J Down, J Turnbull, T Williams, S Shingler, M Morgan.

Dragons: H Amos, A Hewitt, T Morgan, J Dixon, J Rosser, G Henson, S Pretorius, B Harris, E Dee, L Brown, M Screech, C Hill (captain), J Thomas, O Griffiths, J Benjamin. Replacements: L Belcher, L Garrett, L Fairbrother, J Davies, A Wainwright, O Leonard, A O’Brien, W Talbot-Davies.

Referee: Nigel Owens (Wales)