SHAUN Connor has hailed the new Dragons regime as a “breath of fresh air” and says that additions to the management team will lead to more scrutiny.

The backs coach and forwards coach Ceri Jones have been kept on the roster since Bernard Jackman was appointed as a replacement for Kingsley Jones by the Welsh Rugby Union following their takeover of the region.

The head coach has been given the backing by the governing body to add to his management team and has brought in defence coach Hendre Marnitz and skills coach Barry Maddocks, while ex-Wales hooker Rhys Thomas is now specialising on the breakdown to go along with his academy duties.

The Dragons have traditionally operated on a shoestring budget with coaches combining roles but Connor believes they can prosper from being allowed to specialise.

“It’s been a breath of fresh air with the Union taking over,” said the former fly-half from Nantyglo.

“We haven’t had the financial pressures of recent years and the new staff coming in has meant that we have just been able to concentrate on our individual jobs.

“Rather than covering everything thinly we are able to be a lot more specific and hopefully that will show in the way that we play.

“It has been tough in recent seasons and it’s only through experiencing the new set-up and system that you realise past coaches have been working with their hands tied behind their backs.

“It was through no fault of anyone’s, there just wasn’t the finance to spend on support staff.

“At the end of the day you can’t have accountability if you don’t know what your role is. We are all accountable now and hopefully that will lead to success on the field.”

Jackman has expressed his desire for the Dragons to have more edge in attack and backs coach Connor is enjoying “bouncing ideas off” the Irishman.

The aim is to impress in their final friendly against Glasgow in Ebbw Vale today, showing the sort of style that will attract punters to Rodney Parade.

“The onus is on us as a management group and Bernard is keen to play a brand of rugby that people want to come and watch,” said Connor.

“People want to see winning rugby and an enjoyable style, so it’s up to us to get our product right and encourage more people to come.”

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