Dragons get their kicks from shootout

Dragons get their kicks from shootout

Dragons get their kicks from shootout

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

NEWPORT Gwent Dragons’ kickers are having a shootout to earn the kicking duties in Friday’s RaboDirect Pro12 encounter with Edinburgh.

Wing Tom Prydie has been the man with the responsibility from the tee in all four games so far but has endured a slight wobble of late.

The 20-year-old, who was the top points scorer in the Junior World Championship last summer, missed three against Cardiff Blues and a costly pair against Munster last week.

That performance in Limerick, which was in contrast to Ireland and Lions star Ronan O’Gara’s imperious display, saw Lewis Robling take over and the young fly-half nailed his two shots at goal.

The Dragons possess five kickers in the squad for Friday’s clash against their in-form Scottish rivals – Prydie, Robling, fly-half Steffan Jones, centre/wing Adam Hughes and full-back Dan Evans.

They were under close scrutiny when they took part in a session at Rodney Parade yesterday and they will be battling for responsibility when they line up shots at the sticks tomorrow.

“It’s tempting to flick a coin for it!” said head coach Darren Edwards. “But the guy that steps up in the two sessions this week will get the kicking duties.

“These are young guys and it’s good to challenge them and take them out of their comfort zone.

“Lewis Robling has been our best kicker on the training ground and I was pleased that he showed plenty of confidence to put over two kicks when he took over against Munster. He was determined and showed great mental toughness.”

First, though, a potential kicker must earn a place in the starting line-up and the Dragons make just one change to last week’s extended squad for the Munster game with tighthead Nathan Buck replacing Tim Ryan.

Back row forwards Toby Faletau and Lewis Evans took a full part in training yesterday after suffering from ankle and calf problems respectively and are poised to return to the starting line-up.

Lock Rob Sidoli is not quite back in contention (calf) while speedster Tonderai Chavhanga is still working his way back to fitness following summer surgery on his knee.

The South Africa international wing may be back in contention when the Amlin Challenge Cup starts away at London Wasps on October 13.

Wayne Evans (back) and Joe Bedford (shoulder) are still out meaning that Jonathan Evans can build on a highly promising start to the campaign at scrum-half with Bedwas’ Liam Davies backing him up.

Dragons squad: D Evans, T Prydie, W Harries, A Hughes, A Tuilagi, P Leach, A Smith, L Robling, Steffan Jones, J Evans, L Davies, P Price, A Coundley, Steve Jones, S Parry, D Way, N Buck, I Nimmo, A Jones, H Stoddart, L Evans, T Faletau, T Brown, D Lydiate, J Groves.

Comments (3)

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3:51pm Wed 26 Sep 12

high x boy says...

where are our three summer signings ? two props and a flanker.
where are our three summer signings ? two props and a flanker. high x boy
  • Score: 0

7:29pm Wed 26 Sep 12

stevo10 says...

I vaguely recall a pre-season Q & A conducted by your newspaper, with messrs Edwards, Appleyard & Beale. One question was asked in relation to whether Neil Jenkins would come in to work with the goal kickers. A positive response was returned with the added bonus of the Conditioning coach throwing his hat into the ring to pass on his Goal kicking expertise! Because, as it was put, "He enjoys taking kicks at goal" Rather than toss a coin, maybe the Conditioning Coach should decide? I see Priestland is suffering too, so it would be interesting to see if and how Llanelli Scarlets assess their situation. I did see an advert on their web-site advertising for a Specialist in this area but have not yet seen who they employed.
I vaguely recall a pre-season Q & A conducted by your newspaper, with messrs Edwards, Appleyard & Beale. One question was asked in relation to whether Neil Jenkins would come in to work with the goal kickers. A positive response was returned with the added bonus of the Conditioning coach throwing his hat into the ring to pass on his Goal kicking expertise! Because, as it was put, "He enjoys taking kicks at goal" Rather than toss a coin, maybe the Conditioning Coach should decide? I see Priestland is suffering too, so it would be interesting to see if and how Llanelli Scarlets assess their situation. I did see an advert on their web-site advertising for a Specialist in this area but have not yet seen who they employed. stevo10
  • Score: 0

9:19pm Wed 26 Sep 12

Doberman1 says...

"it's tempting to flick a coin for it" .....just about sums up the level of professionalism under DE, the man is so out of his depth it is scary.
I wonder who will be captain Friday, I know let's play Rock, Paper, Scissors and the winner gets the armband.
"it's tempting to flick a coin for it" .....just about sums up the level of professionalism under DE, the man is so out of his depth it is scary. I wonder who will be captain Friday, I know let's play Rock, Paper, Scissors and the winner gets the armband. Doberman1
  • Score: 0

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