HAL Luscombe is back in the running for a place in the Newport Gwent Dragons team to face Borders at Galashiels on Friday night.

Though Borders are bottom of the Celtic League it's a vital game for the Dragons because if Neath-Swansea Ospreys beat Leinster, also on Friday night, the Dragons will go second if they win, still with a game in hand.

Luscombe damaged a shoulder joint against Glasgow nearly three weeks ago, and it was initially thought he would be out for between four and six weeks.

But the Wales international who played in all three summer Tests, is back training this week, though he has yet to take a real bump on the shoulder.

Dragons coach Chris Anderson is waiting to see how Luscombe goes in training today before finalising his team, and the same applies to prop Chris Anthony.

He has started only one game this season, the first against Cardiff Blues, when he suffered a rib injury which kept him out of the Llanelli Scarlets and Glasgow fixtures.

He went on as a replacement in the second half against Leinster, but then injured his neck doing weight training and was forced to miss the Ulster match.

Rhys Thomas has been progessing steadily in his absence though, and the scrum has hardly been weakened while Thomas has also been making his presence felt in the loose.

Anderson has named a squad for the trip to Scotland, but main interest in his actual team selection will be on whether he changes much.

It is an opportunity to give players who have hardly featured a chance, but at the same time the coach may want to keep the team which has been so successful together for the final game before next week's opening Heineken Cup-tie against Newcastle.

On that basis changes are expected to be minimal. Adam Black is set to get his first start of the season at prop, but apart from that the only difference could be Anderson using his replacements far earlier in the match against Borders.

The only player still out of action is centre Jon Bryant, who has a back injury.

Dragons squad: K Morgan, G Wyatt, P Montgomery, S Tuipulotu, N Brew, H Luscombe, S Winn, C Sweeney, C Warlow, G Cooper, G Baber, R Snow, A Black, S Jones, J Richards, R Thomas, C Anthony, I Gough, M Owen, P Sidoli, J Ringer, R Bryan, J Forster (captain), R Beattie. Kick off 7.30pm.