Pontypool back Geraint O’Driscoll makes the step up to Regional Rugby for the first time as he starts at number 11 for Dragons in their RaboDirect PRO12 match with Connacht at the Galway Sportsground. The 23 year old replaces the injured Mike Poole on the left wing.
Further changes in the back division after last week's win over Aironi include; Matthew Pewtner for Adam Hughes at 14, Pat Leach moves from 12 to 13 with Ashley Smith returning to the staring line-up at 12, and Joe Bedford starts at scrum half with Wayne Evans on the bench
The only change to the pack sees Nathan Williams in for Phil Price for his first start at loose head.
Newport Gwent Dragons
15 Martyn Thomas, 14 Matthew Pewtner, 13 Pat Leach, 12 Ashley Smith, 11 Geraint O’Driscoll, 10 Jason Tovey, 9 Joe Bedford, 1 Nathan Williams, 2 Tom Willis (c), 3 Dan Way, 4 Adam Jones, 5 Rob Sidoli, 6 Lewis Evans, 7 Gavin Thomas, 8 Andrew Coombs
16 Rhys Buckley, 17 Phil Price, 18 Nathan Buck, 19 Darren Waters, 20 Jevon Groves, 21 Wayne Evans, 22 Tom Riley, 23 Matthew Jones