THE Dragons will be without Wales back rower Taine Basham until their European Challenge Cup trip to Pau in December after he was given a four-game ban for a red card.

The 24-year-old from Talywain was dismissed in the 66th minute of Sunday’s 33-10 defeat to Leinster at Rodney Parade for a late cheap shot.

Basham, on his second Dragons appearance of the season after World Cup duty, caught Ross Byrne in the head with his left elbow after the Irish fly-half had put in a clearance kick.

Referee Gianluca Gnecchi viewed the footage on the big screen and had no hesitation in showing a red card to the 16-times capped back rower.

Basham will now miss Saturday’s URC derby with the Ospreys, the double-header against the Lions and Sharks in South Africa plus the Challenge Cup opener against Oyonnax in Newport.

He will return to the mix for the trip to Pau on December 16, the last fixture before the festive derbies against Cardiff at the Arms Park and the Scarlets at Rodney Parade.

Basham accepted he deserved a red card when going through the disciplinary process and judicial officer Roddy MacLeod deemed it was a mid-range offence warranting a six-week ban.

However, the Wales international had two games chalked off – Pau and Cardiff – due to “his remorse, apology and engagement in the disciplinary process”.