Dragons Rugby have announced the signing of two home-grown players, as Elliott Dee and Leon Brown commit their futures to the Gwent side.
23-year-old hooker Dee has been one of the breakthrough stars of the season in the Guinness Pro14 this season, with five tries in six matches, and taking his appearance total to 74 already.
Rewarded with a Wales call-up, the Newport-born player appeared for Pontypool and Ebbw Vale whilst within the academy, before cementing his place in the number two jersey at Rodney Parade.
Speaking to the Dragons official website he said, “It feels great to have hit a bit of form for the Region that I love, and I am really proud to have signed a new three-year deal for the Dragons.
“I have always wanted to be a Dragon, since coming down to Rodney Parade to watch the likes of Rob Sidoli and Tom Willis play – I am from Gwent and I wouldn’t have wanted to sign anywhere else.”
“There’s probably a group of 8-10 boys who I have grown up with and played rugby alongside. We always say before we go out and play that there is nothing better than going to war with your friends, you can look to your left or your right and you know that they will put 100% in.”
Tighthead prop Leon Brown has also burst onto the scene properly this year after starring for Wales U20s in recent seasons.
Despite having only just turned 21-years-old he has already made seven appearances this season and scored a try against the Ospreys last weekend to celebrate gaining a call-up to the senior Wales squad.
Also speaking to the official website, he said “I am really enjoying it, it’s great that Bernard has shown a bit of faith in me with selection and I love it!
“We are going in the right direction behind the scenes and this helps with the boys on the field. We don’t have to worry about anything, so we can just concentrate on getting better.
“We are making positive steps this season and as I look forward we are hoping to make a big impact.”
Head coach Bernard Jackman was positive about both players committing their futures to Dragons, saying, “We want to reward our youngsters who we believe have talent and passion to represent the Dragons in a really positive light.
“Elliot is one of the hardest trainers I have coached. He strives to get better every day and is passionate about the Dragons and the future of the Region.
“I am delighted that Leon has agreed to sign a long term contract with the Dragons. He has come through our player development pathway and is a hard working honest young man.”
(Featured image: John Grayson)