LUKE Narraway hopes to help the Dragons' young talent follow the lead of Wales hopeful Taine Basham after permanently joining the coaching team.

The former England back row forward was brought in by director of rugby Dean Ryan last summer to take charge of the Rodney Parade region's Celtic Cup team.

The 36-year-old then returned to assist forwards coach Ceri Jones at the start of the year and his permanent appointment was confirmed in mid-April.

He will now be deputy to ex-Wales hooker Mefin Davies, who has replaced Jones, and look to push through the next generation of forward talent.

Narraway worked with the likes of Josh Reynolds, Ellis Shipp, Chris Coleman, Max Williams, Ben Carter, Ben Fry and Lennon Greggains in the development competition last year.

He also guided up-and-comer Basham, who made a rocky start to life under Ryan.

The all-action back rower was yellow-carded in the Celtic Cup clashes against the Scarlets and Ulster, the second one for a reckless knee at a ruck, and received a rollocking from the new boss.

Basham responded with a superb campaign that resulted in the uncapped 20-year-old being called up for Wales' fixture against the Barbarians and the Six Nations.

South Wales Argus:

Narraway (pictured above, left, with defence coach Simon Cross) said: "He texted me saying 'you're welcome' for the new contract as he seems to think he was the main reason why I got it!

"Taine is a really good kid and is a character that's for sure. He has got some serious talent and he was the one that broke through properly from the Celtic Cup team.

"That progress to scoring hat-tricks, getting man of the match awards and call-ups was incredible but he is under no illusions about where he is and how much hard work is ahead to gain any Wales recognition.

"Plus he only has to look around at the other guys in the Dragons back row battling for positions with him.

"It's a position of strength for us and we are lucky to have quality guys in the squad and then underneath there are the likes of Ben Fry and Lennon Greggains nipping at the heels.

"We need to harness that talent and get those two through along with the other Celtic Cup boys.

"Taine is one example of the talent that we've got. It was his turn this year and hopefully we will have a couple more coming through next season and every year."

Narraway, who cut his coaching teeth with Coventry and Bordeaux-Begles, used to be a target at the back of the lineout for Mefin Davies and the pair will join forces again.

"I was at Gloucester when Dean signed Mef and played with him throughout his time there," said the former number eight, who will continue to specialise in the lineout after doing the role in the second half of last season.

"He was a great servant after leaving Celtic Warriors had folded. He turned up and was one of those guys that was hardly injured and played some brilliant rugby.

"I'm looking forward to hooking up again with him because he's a top guy who is highly respected, both for him playing career and now his coaching career.

"I am sure that the front row in particular will benefit from his technical knowledge and experiences.

"He is a few years further down the line than me as a coach but I think we are pretty aligned as to how we want the game to be played and how we want to coach. Hopefully I'll pick up a few things from him."

South Wales Argus:

The main man, however, is Ryan.

The boss had an encouraging first campaign at Rodney Parade and Narraway hopes to help him enjoy another season of improvement.

"I've known Dean for a while now, first as a player and then as a coach," said Narraway.

"When I finished at Bordeaux I valued his opinion (about what to do next) and I feel that this is a great place for me to be, with Dean a boss but also a mentor.

"Everyone has their role but it's also an open forum to a degree; if you have ideas then you can air them and we talk about how we could put them into a plan.

"It's been a good experience so far to see how Dean works and how the future of the Dragons will work."