THE Dragons know what it’s like to feel the heat because of a losing streak, now they hope to profit from the pressure building on the winless Sharks.

The Rodney Parade club travelled to South Africa for a United Rugby Championship double-header buoyed by last weekend’s 20-5 derby win against the Ospreys.

Dai Flanagan’s side were under pressure to get the campaign up and running after narrow home defeats to Edinburgh and Cardiff before heavy losses to Irish big guns Munster and Leinster.

The victory was much-needed and now they attempt to prevent the Sharks from feeling similar relief in Durban tomorrow (kick-off 5.05pm).

The South African side prop up the table after defeats on the road to Munster, Leinster, Ospreys and Zebre then a home loss to Connacht.

“Pressure builds because of results, we have just experienced that,” said Dragons head coach Dai Flanagan. “I am sure they are feeling it and will want to change that.

“They were a catch of the ball away from scoring multiple tries against the Ospreys in London. We need to make sure they are the catch of a ball away against us.”

The Dragons have never won in South Africa with a record of played eight, drawn two and lost six.

They were hammered 51-3 by the Sharks in April 2022 but last season performed strongly in a triple-header.

Flanagan’s side lost 33-25 to the Lions and 34-26, with a four-try bonus, to the Stormers in the URC before a 31-31 draw with the Lions in the Challenge Cup.

“The dry track suited us and allowed us throw the ball around and get it to our athletes,” said the boss.

“We've got to show ambition to win, we have to score tries and make sure our attack is on point. Our defence will be critical to get turnovers, especially this week because the Sharks will throw the ball around.

“We have got to be all-action and concentrate for 80 minutes so that we don't let anything weak in.”

The Dragons name their matchday 23 at midday after travelling with 30 players.

Harri Keddie is back from concussion as a back row option but full-back Jordan Williams, who has been out with a back problem, is not in contention with a return at the Lions likely.

Flanagan will be forced into at least two changes to his matchday squad with lock Ben Carter (hamstring) and hooker Elliot Dee (ribs) out but the management will look for more of the same after beating the 14-man Ospreys.

“The performance really pleased me, we were able to move the ball, stress them and fatigue them,” said the head coach.

“We found a bit of what I believe is our DNA, moving the point of contact. We should have been more accurate at the end of the game but we were happy to take a win.”

Dragons’ touring party

Forwards: Rhodri Jones, Aki Seiuli, Dylan Kelleher-Griffiths, Bradley Roberts, James Benjamin, Brodie Coghlan, Lloyd Fairbrother, Chris Coleman, Luke Yendle, Matthew Screech, Joe Davies, George Nott, Sean Lonsdale, Harri Keddie, Ryan Woodman, Ollie Griffiths, Aaron Wainwright.

Backs: Dane Blacker, Rhodri Williams, Lewis Jones, Will Reed, Cai Evans, Aneurin Owen, Corey Baldwin, Steff Hughes (captain), Sio Tomkinson, Rio Dyer, Ashton Hewitt, Ewan Rosser, Jordan Williams.