BRIGHT prospect Ben Carter made the U20 Six Nations record books thanks to his tackle count last season but it's homework at the lineout that he hopes will help to make the next step to the senior Dragons team.

The lock from Caldicot captained the Rodney Parade region to the Under-18 Regional Age-Grade Championship title in 2019.

The 19-year-old continued on the upward curve last season when he was an ever-present in the Wales XV at the U20 Six Nations, not missing a minute.

It was in the opener against Italy that his tackling effort caught the eye when both he and number eight Morgan Strong made 29 successful efforts.

That matched the championship record made by now full Ireland international James Ryan against Scotland four years ago.

That work ethic will have impressed Dragons boss Dean Ryan, who loves a grafter.

Carter got a taste of training with the firsts in Ystrad Mynach last season, working alongside senior locks Cory Hill, Matthew Screech, Joe Davies and Brandon Nansen, and he wants to keep catching the eye of the management.

"Since the beginning of the season I've seen a lot of the seniors and it helps Dean has shown a lot of interest in developing the younger guys," said the prospect, who has another year at U20 level.

"It's a great place for us to be in because that is what we want to do. We want to develop and push through towards that senior team."

South Wales Argus:

Carters, who is 6ft 6ins, needs some physical growth before mixing it with the big boys in the PRO14 but enjoyed getting an opportunity in the Celtic Cup last season.

"I played in three games, came off bench in two and started against Ospreys," he recalls. "(Coach) Luke Narraway has been brilliant, especially in the lineout for me.

"It's one of the things I am working on at the moment most, calling the lineout and tactically and technically he's been great for that.

"We quite often have little conversations as I'm passing him in the building and Hobbsy (academy coach Sam Hobbs) as well. Right through from the under-18s I've been close with him and things have worked well so far.

"Physically from the 18s, it's been a big jump but it's been great for my learning being with players who have played in the PRO14, I think they have been great mentors.

"Prior to the lockdown I'd been in a few of the unit sessions on a Tuesday, the players there are great and they help me out.

"They are invested in the academy at the Dragons and it's a great place for us younger guys to be, great for our development and I'm looking forward towards the future."