WHEN the four region’s head to the Millennium Stadium for a double-header in March they will do so under the banner ‘Judgement Day’.
The same term that could quite easily be used to market Newport Gwent Dragons’ RaboDirect Pro12 encounter with Connacht tomorrow.
The Test with New Zealand may be earning most of the column inches in Wales but in this neck of the woods the monumental clash of the weekend happens 22 hours before the haka.
On Sunday the Dragons produced an encouraging performance against Northampton but it wasn’t enough to prevent a regional record seventh loss on the spin.
Close but no cigar is not acceptable against Connacht – four points is the minimum requirement.
This time next week the Dragons will be preparing for a road trip.
They will be set to fly out for their Pro12 clash at Treviso on the Saturday then staying in Italy (it’s cheaper) until they lock horns with Mogliano in the Amlin Challenge Cup seven days later.
Fail to get a win against Connacht and the players would be advised to start searching for early flights, because plenty of flak will be coming their way.
But there was enough in the performance against the Saints to be positive ahead of what is a massive game for both those that will be on the pitch and those that are on the coaching staff.
We get used to sportsmen trotting out the term ‘must-win game’ but it is really the case tomorrow.
Jobs are on the line but there is also plenty to gain.
Get the win and suddenly the Dragons will believe that they can chase down the Blues in the race for Heineken Cup rugby.
Some put regional rugby on the back burner on international weekend but tomorrow it really is a case of 80 minutes shaping a season.