PERCY Montgomery makes his long awaited full debut for Newport in Friday night's Welsh League game against Bridgend at Rodney Parade.

And he aims to make an impact straight from the off.

"I can't wait to get a few games under my belt and I hope I can get a bit of magic going," he said.

"I'm looking forward to it, though players may be gunning for me. I've got to stay calm and do the basics right."

Montgomery, whose 50 caps for South Africa is the fourth highest in their history, plays in his specialist full back position.

That means Shane Howarth reverts to his now preferred position of outside half with Jason Strange dropping to the bench after a run of eight successive appearances at outside half.

Montgomery has faced a long wait to make his senior debut for Newport, having been in Wales for nearly two months.

But because he could not be registered in time for the Heineken Cup and because of the autumn internationals, he has been unable to turn out.

His sole appearance was for Newport United against Swansea Athletic in a friendly last month.

He has been targeting the Bridgend game all along, building up for it, and his presence on Friday should guarantee at least a reasonable crowd after the huge disappointment of London Irish.

The place- kicking role will also go back to Howarth. Montgomery, who has kicked goals for country and province, wants to concentrate on his general game.

"Percy has waited a while to make his league debut, but training with the squad has done him the world of good," said coach Leigh Jones.

"He's a full part of the team and is chomping at the bit. I'm sure he'll show the obvious class he possesses.

"Selection as a whole is increasingly difficult, but from a positive perspective as players return to fitness hopefully the squad system will kick in properly and work in our favour.

"We feel this is the best starting XV for Bridgend."

Ofisa Tonu'u has failed to recover from a dead leg after missing the London Irish debacle, and Dale Burn continues to deputise, but Howarth, Andy Marinos, Adrian Garvey, Jason Forster and replacement Chris Anthony have all overcome minor injury worries.

With most players reporting fit, Newport field five internationals in the backs and ten in all.

An all-change front row sees Rod Snow, James Richards and Garvey start, while Ian Gough returns at lock.

Forster is back at openside flanker, with Andrew Powell back on the bench and likely to play some role.

Team: P Montgomery, M Mostyn, J Jones-Hughes, A Marinos, H Luscombe, S Howarth, D Burn, R Snow, J Richards, A Garvey, S Raiwalui (captain), I Gough, G Gravell, S Ojomoh, J Forster. Replacements: J Strange, J Pritchard, L Lane, C Anthony, P Young, M Voyle, A Powell. Kick-off 7.05pm.