DRAGONS boss Bernard Jackman is excited by the brute force of Joe Davies after the young lock penned a fresh deal with the Rodney Parade region through to 2021.

The 22-year-old from Caldicot has enjoyed a bright start to the season with his nine appearances surpassing his combined tally from the three campaigns since his 2013 debut at the Scarlets.

Davies has long been highly-rated by the Dragons but the imposing 6ft 6ins second rower has been hindered by injuries with both shoulders needing reconstruction surgery along with an operation on his left knee.

However, the former Wales Under-20s international has strung together a run of games and shown enough promise to be handed a contract extension by his head coach.

Jackman says that Davies, son of former World Championship silver medallist weightlifter Andrew, is starting to pack a punch in the Dragons’ boilerhouse.

“Joe missed two seasons of game time and training but what we like about Joe is that he is proper tough,” said Jackman.

“Some of the numbers he can throw around the gym are off the scale and in the set piece every tighthead begs to have him behind them, which is always a good sign in terms of the power that he can put through in the scrum.

“In terms of his impact tackles, he is one of those rare guys that when he hits players the ball can become dislodged by the force.

“At Newcastle away he had four forced turnovers from tackles and that was the first time I had seen that power we knew he had in the gym being transferred to the pitch.

“We tied him down for three years because there are not many fellas like him walking around the streets of Ystrad Mynach!

“His game has improved and he is the type of lock you want in that you tell him what to do and he does it. He works hard and his lineout delivery is improving.

“Joe is very raw and we will only get to near his ceiling over the next three years but it’s nice to know we are developing him.

“He is very hungry and just desperate to play regularly. Two years out has been frustrating for him but that either makes or breaks players and it looks like it has made him.”

Davies is a popular figure at Bedwas thanks to his exploits for the club in the Premiership but is excited that a run of games has enabled him to show his qualities on the professional stage with the Dragons.

“It’s my home region and I wanted to stay here, I’ve not known anything else but I definitely want to be here in the future,” said Davies.

“I’m hopefully aiming high and I want to kick on and get a lot more out of my game.

“The last few years have not been kind to me but since the start of the season I have just kept pushing myself and pushing myself. I’m not going to say that I am there yet but I am getting to where I want to be.

“There was a sigh of relief when I got the offer, I am happy here and hopefully I will have a big future here and I can push on.”