Charteris ruled out of Italian trip
November 8, 2011
The Dragons will have to cope without Charteris until December © Getty Images
Welsh lock Luke Charteris looks set to be out of action until December and will miss Newport Gwent-Dragons' Amlin Challenge Cup clash with Cavalieri Prato on Saturday.
The second-row is struggling with a wrist injury though they will call upon fellow Welsh internationals Toby Faletau, Dan Lydiate, Lloyd Burns and Aled Brew after the quartet were included in the squad for the match. Despite their return, the list of injured Dragons will be a worry for their backroom staff with the likes of Tom Willis (thumb) and Mike Poole (knee) sidelined.
The Dragons struggled in the Celtic league last year and after their poor finish had to settle for a spot in the Challenge Cup. But Burns is looking at this competition as an opportunity to propel them back into Europe's premier competition.
"Of course it is pretty disappointing that we are not in the Heineken Cup but that is the way it is and we just need to get on with things and go out to put in some big performances in the Amlin Challenge Cup and prove we deserve to get back into the Heineken Cup next season," Burns told BBC Wales. "The challenges and competition will still be massive, just like the Heineken Cup, and we certainly will not be taking any of our opponents lightly and be going into the matches with all guns blazing."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
Proposals to remove promotion and relegation from the Aviva Premiership would be for the good of the game overall, argues John Taylor
Ireland have the world sitting up and taking notice - and rugby's structure in Europe will aid their Rugby World Cup bid, writes John Mitchell
Where does Italy's win over Scotland rank among their successes in the Six Nations? Scrum Sevens investigates
The tone was set early on in Dublin as a more clinical Ireland made England pay. All is not lost, however, argues Phil Vickery