CAPTAIN Rhodri Williams is certain that the future is bright for the Dragons, and he’s excited about the prospect of an improved showing next season.

Williams led the Rodney Parade region to a 32-15 Judgement Day defeat against the Scarlets on Saturday to conclude another disappointing campaign.

Dai Flanagan’s men finished 15th in the United Rugby Championship, below all their Welsh rivals and above only Italian strugglers Zebre in the table.

But Williams, who has been at the Dragons since 2018, believes there are brighter days ahead with youngsters like Joe Westwood and Brodie Coghlan impressing on Saturday.

“We’re disappointed,” said the 31-year-old after the Cardiff City Stadium defeat. “The last game of the season, we wanted a better result.

“There were key moments, especially before half-time when they were down to 14 men – we’ve got to take that opportunity. We weren’t clinical enough and conceding the second try then was a big moment in the game.

“But there were plenty of positives – we showed good character and fight towards the end to come back with two tries.

“We had a young back line and it’s good to develop players. The quality they are now, they’re only going to grow. It’s an exciting time for some of the youngsters in the squad.

“We’ve got a very good squad at the moment and there are some players coming to a great age now. We need to take that step forward, do the work in pre-season and put that together in games.

South Wales Argus: Rhodri Williams leads out the Dragons RFC side at Judgement DayRhodri Williams leads out the Dragons RFC side at Judgement Day (Image: Huw Evans Agency)

“It’s exciting times,” added the scrum-half, who won three caps for Wales during his Scarlets days.

“We’re moving in the right direction. We’ve added to our squad. There are some big players leaving, but there are a few coming in and with the youngsters coming through we’re excited for the new season.

“Some of the young players have really stepped up in the Prem and to see those boys getting the opportunity is exciting.”

What are the biggest areas of improvement needed for the Dragons to be more competitive next season?

“We’ve got to be clinical in the 22,” said Williams. “Throughout the season we’ve done some things really well, but we’ve backed off in other areas.

“We need to get an all-round game together for a full 80 minutes.

“We’ve spoken about how many games we would have won at 60 minutes. We’ve let games go away from us in the final 20 minutes. We need to look at that and how smart we are going into that last 20.”