The squad are chomping at the bit and cannot wait to start their Celtic League campaign with a match against rivals The Blues.
"It is a fantastic match to start our Celtic League campaign with," commented team manager Jim McCreedy. "There is a whole host of history between the two sides when it was Newport and Cardiff and that rivalry and passion has continued now we are The Dragons and The Blues. It is set to be an epic match and the whole team feels there is no better way to start our Celtic League campaign."
Five of The Dragons new signings make their full competitive debuts whilst the other two signings are named on the replacements bench. A big boost for The Dragons is that Gareth Cooper returns following a shoulder operation.
Coach Chris Anderson in charge for his first full competitive match for The Dragons said, "We are under no illusion as to how tough a match it will be. We are expecting a backlash from The Blues following their result last weekend. They will present a challenge for us and are a tough prospect. They will be looking to improve on their performance from last weekend. However, we have had a good close season, training has gone well and we are going to Cardiff full of confidence"
Anderson believes that his side could not face a stronger test to start their League campaign. "We are playing Cardiff Blues on their home patch so the advantage lies with them. They have recruited well in the forwards over the close season and have backs who contain an abundance of talent and they can do some real damage. We are expecting a real battle."
There is no let up for The Dragons who face two Welsh derbies on consecutive weekends. After tackling The Blues they entertain The Scarlets at Rodney Parade in what will surely be another highly charged affair.
The Dragons come into the Blues match on the back of a 30-7 victory over Ulster in their final pre-season trial match, but Anderson is refusing to get carried away. "The trial matches saw mixed results for us, but they are not a real marker of where we are. Those matches were about allowing me to watch our squad of players and for them to get more game time and match fit. The marker of where we are starts on Saturday at the Arms Park. Championships are not won in pre season."
Blues: R Williams; J Vaughton, T Shanklin, T Davies, C Morgan; L Thomas, R Smith; G Jenkins, G Williams, B Evans, C Quinnell, R Sidoli, N Thomas, M Williams (capt), K Schubert.
Replacements: J Yapp, M Leaman, M Jones, D Jones, M Lewis, D Dewdney, N Macleod.
Dragons: K Morgan; G Wyatt, H Luscombe, J Bryant, N Brew; C Sweeney, G Baber; R Snow, S Jones, C Anthony, I Gough, M Owen, J Ringer, J Forster (capt), R Bryan.
Replacements: S Tuipulotu, G Cooper, A Black, J Richards, R Thomas, P Sidoli, R Beattie.
Referee: Alain Rolland (Ireland)