Dragons fly-half Jason Tovey has been backed to make the step up to international level by one of the game’s most respected playmakers.
Former Wales and Lions No10 Phil Bennett believes the young Dragon has what it takes to ensure Dan Biggar isn’t the only pretender to Stephen Jones’ shirt.
Tovey was in superb form last season as the Dragons emerged as surprise contenders for a Magners League Play-Off berth.
The 21-year-old began the season at full back but finished the campaign as one of the most-talked about players in Wales following a string of impressive performances for his region.
A year after missing out on a place in the Wales squad to North America due to Heineken Cup Play-Off commitments with the Dragons, Tovey was on standby for the summer tour of New Zealand on which Jones and Biggar started a Test each against the All Blacks.
And while Tovey may be number three in the current pecking order, Bennett expects the left-footer to push Biggar all the way when Jones’ lengthy international career eventually comes to an end.
“Stephen is coming to the end of his career and Jason has every chance of establishing himself as an international player,” Bennett told the Western Telegraph.
“He has a cultured left boot and I thought he was excellent towards the end of the season.
“Jason’s an outstanding kicker with a beautiful touch. He’s a quality player.
“It’s good news for Welsh rugby that Jason will challenge Dan, who is himself such a good controller of a game.”