Newport Gwent Dragons Head Coach Paul Turner has announced a 25-man squad for the region's Magners League clash with Connacht at the Sportsground on Wednesday (6:30pm)
There have been mixed fortunes at the Dragons this week in the injury stakes as the region looks ahead to the Magners League match.
Prop Nigel Hall who has been out since October returned to Premiership action at the weekend after recovering from shoulder surgery and back row Joe Bearman (groin) and scrum half Danny Lee (shoulder) are both progressing well following surgery.
However, the region has been dealt a double blow in the loss of Lewis Evans and Adam Jones. Jones will undergo surgery for a ruptured tendon in his hand next week and could miss the rest of the season whilst Evans has been pulled out with a suspected broken thumb which could see him sidelined for 4-6 weeks.
Hooker Duane Goodfield who damaged his knee ligaments in the Barbarians game last Tuesday is still a doubt and Welsh squad members Luke Charteris and Danny Lydiate are also unavailable.
Newport captain Andrew Coombs has been called to the squad and back row Toby Faletau has been released from the Welsh Under 20 squad for the match.
Dragons Head Coach Paul Turner said "Although these injuries are always frustrating, both for the players and coaching staff, we have players keen to step up for these games.
"As we have seen already this season in players such as Tom Riley and Will Harries, all of our squad members are ready to make the most of the opportunities they are given and I have no doubt that Andrew Coombs and Toby Faletau in particular will seize this chance with both hands."
Dragons Squad for Connacht
Forwards: Ben Castle, Hugh Gustafson, Pat Palmer, Aaron Coundley, Tom Willis (capt.), Steve jones, Adam Brown , Rob Sidoli, Hoani Macdonald, Andrew Coombs, Grant Webb, Toby Faletau, Gavin Thomas.
Backs: Martyn Thomas, Richard Fussell, Will Harries, Aled Brew, Tom Riley, Mathew Watkins, Ashley Smith, Jason Tovey, James Arlidge, James Leadbeater, Wayne Evans.
Nearly 40 players were involved in the first Wales Under 18 training session of the season. WRU National Performance Manager Gethin Watts is excited at the potential shown by the group and expects the Regional Under 18 Championship to hone their skills even further.