MATT O’Brien will take on the fly-half duties for Newport in their Principality Premiership derby against Ebbw Vale at Rodney Parade tomorrow (kick-off 2.30pm).

Black and Ambers chief Craig Warlow has picked the experienced O’Brien over Haydn Simons, who drops to the bench after impressing against Aberavon last time out.

Simons featured prominently as Newport knocked the Wizards out of the National Cup to secure a place in the quarter-finals.

Warlow has only made one other change to his starting XV from that 22-9 victory, with Evan Whitson getting the nod at hooker.

Whitson performed well after coming on as a replacement for the injured Henry Palmer during the Aberavon tie.

Nick Boyce and Garin Harris pack down alongside Whitson, Joe Bartlett and Dan Partridge keep their places in the second row, and Rhys Cresswell, Kyle Tayler and Alex Everett form the back row.

O’Brien partners Ryan James in the half-backs, Tom Pascoe and Geraint O’Driscoll are the Newport centres, while Jon Morris, Adam Sabri and Elliot Frewen make up the back three.

Will Evans, Matt Prosser, Tom Piper, Andrew Mann, Josh Reid, Owen Davies and Andrew Evans feature with Simons on the replacements bench.

Greg Woods takes charge of his first match as Ebbw head coach tomorrow following his move from Cross Keys.

He goes with Dan Haymond at full-back and Stefan Thomas and Toby Fricker on the wings, with James Lewis and Dom Franchi in the midfield.

Dai Langdon and Dai Jones are at fly-half and scrum-half respectively, while Ronny Kynes continues as skipper.

The openside features in a back row that also includes blindside Cameron Regan and number eight Lewis Young.

Ross Jones, Rhys Francis and Rob Sevenoaks form the front row and Lance Randall partners Rhys Clarke in the second row.

Joe Franchi, Joel Harries, Josh James, Kristian Parker, Ben Papp, Sam Ireland, Callum Hall and Srdan Majkic make up the substitutes.

Ebbw’s cup tie against Bridgend last weekend fell to the weather, as did Bedwas’ trip to Beddau.

Ian Gardner’s men host Merthyr today (kick-off 11.30am) without prop Dan Preece, who is unavailable due to work commitments.

Brynley Toms and Rhys Hutcherson pack down either side of hooker Alun Rees, Geraint Edmunds and Craig Hudd are the two locks and Nathan Hudd, skipper George Lee and Andrew Waite are picked in the back row.

Behind the pack, Luke Crane and Lewis Evans are the half-backs, Steffan Jones joins Mike Callow in the midfield and Pat Lewis, Adam Williams and Aaron Bramwell are the back three.

Bedwas: A Bramwell; A Williams, S Jones, M Callow, P Lewis; L Evans, L Crane; B Toms, A Rees, R Hutcherson, G Edmunds, C Hudd, N Hudd, G Lee (capt), A Waite. Reps: T Devine, J Williams, M Dacey, B Thompson, D McGuigan, T Rowlands, M Hathaway, R Davies.

Newport: E Frewen; A Sabri, G O’Driscoll, T Pascoe, J Morris; M O’Brien, R James; N Boyce, E Whitson, G Harris, J Bartlett, D Partridge, R Cresswell, K Tayler, A Everett. Reps: W Evans, M Prosser, T Piper, A Mann, J Reid, O Davies, H Simons, A Evans.

Ebbw Vale: D Haymond; S Thomas, J Lewis, D Franchi, T Fricker; D Langdon, D Jones; R Jones, R Francis, R Sevenoaks, L Randall, R Clarke, C Regan, R Kynes (capt), L Young. Reps: J Franchi, J Harries, J James, K Parker, B Papp, S Ireland, C Hall, S Majkic.