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Dragons’ playing for places – Smith

Guinness PRO12 Editor

14 Jan 2011


With an eye on the Magners League Newport Gwent Dragons centre Ashley Smith insists his side have plenty to play for against Toulouse despite being knocked out of Europe.

The Dragons can not qualify for the knockout stages but Smith reckons the clash is still a key fixture as the Men of Gwent look to kick on when the Magners League resumes.

The Welsh region bounced back from a festive season defeat against the Scarlets to beat Connacht at home last weekend. But after being the surprise package of last season the Dragons have struggled this year and lie ninth in the Magners League table.

But Smith reckons there is still plenty to play for in the dead-rubber match with places up for grabs as the Dragons look to kick-start their Magners League campaign.

"We are going out there to put a performance in and build on our result against Connacht and the bonus point we took away from the Scarlets," said Smith.

"Everyone at the club is playing for places for the rest of the season and for contract

 "Everyone has written us off and we can’t qualify in Europe but it puts us in a great position where we can hopefully play some rugby and come away with a good result.

"With us only having one bonus point and them top of the group I suppose some people would say we are on for a hiding but strange things have happened in rugby.

"Something that the Dragons have always had is that you’re a team within the team and I think when our backs are against the wall you usually see the best in us. We are looking to put in a good performance and give them a bit of a scare.

"There are also boys in the squad who are involved with Wales and they are obviously playing for their international spots for the Six Nations so there is plenty to play for."

The Dragons return to Magners League action when they welcome Edinburgh to Rodney Parade on February 12.