Dragons captain Rhodri Williams admits he is loving his rugby with the region and is excited for the Heineken Champions Cup to get under away as his side prepare to take on Wasps at Rodney Parade.
The Gwent based region are heading into European competition following back-to-back away victories in the Guinness PRO14, victories that Williams has been a big factor in.
Huge defensive efforts have been an important part to their run of form and scrum half Williams admits he is loving his different role under defence coach Simon Cross.
“I am loving my rugby at the moment and it obviously helps when you’re winning,” he smiled.
“We had a good win out in Treviso and I was generally happy with my performance and then obviously Glasgow, there were a few errors and I won’t hide away from those but it is going to happen and it’s how I deal with them errors and I was quite pleased with that.
“We have a slightly different role since Simon came in, a standard nine will defend the channel of a line out for argument sake and majority of the time we are off the tail.
“There are slight differences, slight tweaks and all three nines are loving that slight difference, it’s the first time I have done it and I’m just loving the variety around that.
“We are a big part of the defensive sets and we have a big role in scanning things and communicating, probably similar to attack really as we are a big voice in attack in the team. I’m just loving the way that we play at the moment.”
The game against last season’s Gallagher Premiership runners-up will be Dragons first Champions Cup match since the 2010/2011 season. And Williams admits the whole squad are confident and excited for the experience that awaits.
He said: “We couldn’t be going into the Heineken Champions Cup on the back of two results being more ideal for us.
“We speak about building and the squad is very excited for the experience of the Champions Cup ahead.
”It is a step up, I’ve been fortunate enough to have played in this competition and it is a step up” added the 27-year-old.
“People do say it’s the closest at club level that you can get to test rugby, the step up in speed and just the quality you’re playing against.
“That will come this weekend with a quality side like Wasps, they are such a big English side and they are going to test us.”
The former Bristol and Scarlets man insists it will be a great opportunity for his side to challenge themselves against one of Europe’s best.
The Welsh international admits that he still has a desire to play for Wales again and is hoping he can put his hand up for selection with good performances for Dragons over the festive period.
“I think we will get our things in order this week on the training field and we are a confident squad at the moment, coming off the back of the last two results,” he added.
“This is a chance for us to challenge ourselves against a side that after last year are the second best in England, which means they are one of the best teams in Europe. It will be good to challenge ourselves against them.
“Playing for Wales is something that’s not going to go away from me, it is a burning desire of mine to play for Wales again.
“I want to put my hand up for selection, but I need to get my performances in order with Dragons and it’s just an exciting period ahead of us at the moment.”
This is a chance for us to challenge ourselves against a side that after last year are the second best in England, which means they are one of the best teams in Europe...