The international hooker is one of five changes to the team that beat Pau in France in the European Rugby Challenge Cup which sees the Welsh Region take the top spot of their European pool.
Sunday’s match sees the Dragons return to the Guinness PRO12 tournament and take on their rivals Cardiff Blues in the annual Christmas derby. The Welsh Regions last encounter saw the Dragons take a win of 25-21 at Rodney Parade in the European Rugby Challenge Cup quarter-final.
The back three of the Dragons team remains unchanged with fullback Carl Meyer joining wings Nick Scott and Ashton Hewitt. Centre Adam Hughes, who recently signed a deal with the Men of Gwent, retains his position and is joined by fellow centre Adam Warren. 24-year-old Dorian Jones moves from the bench to start as fly-half and joins scrum-half Sarel Pretorius in the half-backs.
The front row has two changes as prop Phil Price is joined by skipper Thomas Rhys Thomas and South African prop Brok Harris. The second row has one change made to it as Matthew Screech lines up alongside Rynard Landman. Flankers Nick Crosswell and Nic Cudd retain their places in the back row and after suffering a knee injury against Pau last weekend Taulupe Faletau sits out this derby with Lewis Evans taking his place.
The replacements bench has six changes made to it as Elliot Dee, Boris Stankovich, Lloyd Fairbrother, Cory Hill, Luc Jones and Jason Tovey join Ollie Griffiths and Ross Wardle.
Newport Gwent Dragons team to face Cardiff Blues
Carl Meyer, Nick Scott, Adam Hughes, Adam Warren, Ashton Hewitt, Dorian Jones, Sarel Pretorius; Phil Price, Thomas Rhys Thomas ©, Brok Harris, Matthew Screech, Rynard Landman, Nick Crosswell, Nic Cudd, Lewis Evans.
Replacements: Elliot Dee, Boris Stankovich, Lloyd Fairbrother, Cory Hill, Ollie Griffiths, Luc Jones, Jason Tovey, Ross Wardle.
A limited number of tickets are still on sale for the Newport Gwent Dragons clash against Cardiff Blues. Just the North Terrace and Sytner Stand are available. To buy your tickets call 01633 647990 or go to www.newportgwentdragons.com/tickets.