BERNARD Jackman has challenged his Dragons side to finish the job if they hit the front against Cardiff Blues at Rodney Parade this afternoon.

The Dragons entertain their fiercest rivals in the Guinness PRO14 in front of a packed house in Newport (kick-off 2pm).

They are hunting a first league derby win since stunning the Blues in the capital on Boxing Day three years ago, a nightmare streak of 17 defeats.

The Dragons were dreaming of a stunning victory when the sides met in Cardiff in October – tries by Adam Warren, Elliot Dee and George Gasson earned a 21-10 lead at the break.

However, the Blues hit back to take the spoils 43-29 then later that month the Dragons were beaten 28-14 at the Ospreys.

“We’ve played two derbies this season away to the Blues and Ospreys and there were parts of those games that we were pleased with, but what killed us was the lack of the ability to play for 80 minutes,” said head coach Jackman.

“Tied into that was not having a bench that we had confidence in but injuries and four lads going to the autumn internationals has given other players the opportunity to play week in, week out and some have stepped up really well.

“Now I feel that we have a bench and we can play for 80 minutes, because we have continued to ramp up the intensity of our training.

“It’s going to be an interesting test – if we get ahead like we did can we close it out?”

Dragons: H Amos, A Hewitt, A Warren, J Dixon, P Howard, G Henson, D Babos, S Hobbs, E Dee, L Fairbrother, J Davies, C Hill (captain), A Wainwright, J Benjamin, J Sheekey. Replacements: L Belcher, T Davies, N Thomas, R Landman, B Roach, S Pretorius, A O’Brien, J Rosser.

Cardiff Blues: M Morgan, O Lane, G Smith, R Lee-Lo, A Summerhill, G Anscombe, T Williams, B Thyer, M Rees (captain), A Pikrishvili, S Davies, M Cook, J Navidi, O Robinson, N Williams. Replacements: K Myhill, G Jenkins, K Assiratti, D Welch, J Turnbull, L Williams, J Evans, T James.

Referee: Andrew Brace (Ireland)