ARWEL Robson’s return to the Dragons XV has been scuppered by a hamstring injury – giving fly-half Josh Lewis a shot at redemption in tomorrow's European Challenge Cup clash at Northampton (kick-off 3pm).

Robson had been pencilled in to replace Jason Tovey, who is ineligible for Europe, at 10 but the 21-year-old from Ystrad Mynach suffered a tight hamstring in the team run on Friday morning and has been withdrawn as a precaution.

That leads to Lewis getting chance to put right some wrongs after having an evening to forget in the October meeting against the Saints at Rodney Parade.

The 26-year-old, a summer recruit from Bath, had a nightmare with the boot and his struggles led to head coach Bernard Jackman bringing in Tovey on permit from Cross Keys.

Lewis is one of a raft of players looking to impress Jackman, who has rested his Wales contingent from the autumn internationals.

The management make eight changes to their XV that suffered a humiliating 59-10 loss to Leinster at Rodney Parade in the Guinness PRO14.

The sole survivor in the backs is Wales international Hallam Amos, who moves from wing to his favoured position of full-back.

Dafydd Howells and Zane Kirchner are on the wings with Jack Dixon and Adam Warren paired in midfield while Tavis Knoyle is Lewis’ half-back partner.

There are just two changes up front with Samoa lock Brandon Nansen coming in for Rynard Landman and openside Nic Cudd replacing Aaron Wainwright after his Wales exertions.

After being put under pressure by the Saints’ pack in the pre-season and October losses in Newport, Jackman opts for six forwards on the bench and recalls hefty tighthead Nicky Thomas, who spent last month on trial at Bristol.

Wales 7s international James Benjamin, who played centre for the A team in the Celtic Cup, is selected as a back row forward.

The Dragons need to win to keep alive their hopes of qualifying for the last eight after the damaging 35-21 loss to the Saints in Newport.

Jackman said: “It will be an incredible tough game as Northampton Saints have lots of quality.

“However, we want to bounce back from last week’s disappointing display and it’s an opportunity to show the character in the squad.”

Dixon and tighthead Lloyd Fairbrother bring up a century of appearances for the Dragons at Franklin’s Gardens.

“It’s a very special day for both Lloyd and Jack, who are both integral parts of the squad,” said Jackman.

“It’s a great milestone to reach 100 games for your region. Both are still young men who are highly respected by their peers and who will be determined to put in a big performance on the day.”

Northampton make 10 changes to the side that suffered an agonising late home loss to Newcastle last weekend but Wales fly-half Dan Biggar continues.

England internationals Dylan Hartley and Courtney Lawes are rested but the hosts still boast a formidable XV featuring giant Australia wing Taqele Naiyaravoro, Fijian lock Api Ratuniyarawa and the back row of Jamie Gibson, Tom Wood and Teimana Harrison that impressed in Newport.

Northampton: G Furbank, O Sleighholme, R Hutchinson, L Burrell, T Naiyaravoro, D Biggar, A Mitchell, A Waller (captain), J Fish, B Franks, A Ratuniyarawa, A Moon, J Gibson, T Wood, T Harrison. Replacements: R Marshall, W Davis, E Painter, D Ribbans, M Eadie, C Reinach, F Strachan, A Kellaway​.

Dragons: H Amos, D Howells, A Warren, J Dixon, Z Kirchner, J Lewis, T Knoyle, R Bevington, R Hibbard (captain), L Fairbrother, B Nansen, L Evans, H Keddie, N Cudd, O Griffiths. Replacements: R Lawrence, A Jarvis, N Thomas, M Screech, H Taylor, J Benjamin, R Davies, J Williams.

Referee: Thomas Charabas (France)