Aaron Wainwright knows the challenge facing Dragons in the European Challenge Cup quarter-finals – after seeing first-hand during the Rugby World Cup the latest rugby sensation at Bristol Bears.
Dragons make the short trip over the bridge to tackle Pat Lam’s side in the European quarter-finals at Ashton Gate Stadium on Friday, September 18 (kick-off 7.45pm).
Wainwright is hoping to be involved in that huge eight tussle – and to get the chance to once again come face-to-face with new Bristol superstar Semi Radradra.
When Wales faced Fiji in the World Cup in Oita last October it was Wales who emerged 29-17 winners.
But it was Fiji winger Radradra who stole the headlines with an eye-catching man-of-the-match display that Wainwright admitted was something special.
“I came off the bench late on against Fiji at the World Cup and I was glad I was there when I saw some of the runs Radradra was making,” said Wainwright.
“He’s an unbelievable player and Bristol will be a very tough test.
“They’ve signed some amazing players, but we’re all looking forward to the Bristol game.”
Wainwright was delighted to be back playing as Dragons wrapped up the Guinness PRO14 season with two derby games.
The 22-year-old even clocked up his 50th regional appearance in the final day clash with Scarlets at Rodney Parade.
And the Wales international, who has enjoyed a stunning rise to prominence in recent seasons, claims there is a really positive vibe at the region following a number of notable summer additions.
“There’s definitely a good feeling with a couple of new boys,” he said.
“They’ve settled in really well so far and I know a couple of them from Welsh camp.
“I’m excited to start playing alongside them and they’ve been really sharp in training. Hopefully we can all start to get some game time together soon.
“When fans are allowed to come in and watch, they will be the kind of players who attract crowds to come and watch us,” he added.
“They’re the sorts of players people want to see and that, in turn, will drive other players to want to come and join us.
“Having names like that sign for us is massive and hopefully we can get cracking and start playing games together really soon.”
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They’ve signed some amazing players, but we’re all looking forward to the Bristol game.