NEW Dragons lock Brandon Nansen will make his first start for Samoa when they attempt to secure a spot at next year's World Cup this weekend.

The 24-year-old will line up in Heidelberg on Saturday afternoon as the Samoans protect a formidable 66-15 lead from the first leg in Apia.

Nansen, who is arriving at Rodney Parade after a season with Stade Francais, has won two caps as a replacement against Romania last autumn and Tonga this summer.

Unless things go horribly wrong in Germany, the lock/blindside will spend next season attempting to secure a spot in Samoa's squad for a World Cup that pits them against Ireland, Scotland, hosts Japan and Russia in Pool A.

Nansen will be battling Wales international Cory Hill, South African Rynard Landman, Joe Davies and Matthew Screech for places in the Dragons' second row.