BROK Harris is nearing a return to action but the Dragons won’t take any risks by rushing him back to solve their prop problems against Clermont Auvergne’s heavyweight pack.

The influential South African, who can play on both sides of the scrum but is now primarily a loosehead, has been out of action since suffering a knee injury in training last November.

The 33-year-old has returned to training and is nearing a return to action to boost a Dragons side without props Aaron Jarvis (hamstring) and Leon Brown (thumb).

Ryan Bevington has been out since suffering a concussion against the Ospreys at the end of last year while Lloyd Fairbrother missed that derby, the loss to the Scarlets and European Challenge Cup success against Timisoara Saracens because of his red card against Cardiff Blues.

That led to hooker-turned-loosehead Gerard Ellis starting against the Romanians with 20-year-old Chris Coleman starting for the first time on the other side of the scrum with Dan Suter and Nicky Thomas, both tightheads, on the bench.

The presence of Harris in the matchday squad to face Clermont in the Euro finale would be a boost but the Dragons cannot qualify for the quarter-finals and need the front rower for the PRO14 run-in.

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“Brok has been running and doing a lot of the fitness side of things so he is very, very close,” said assistant coach Barry Maddocks.

“We’ve got to make sure he is right and ready to go, and we’ve got to make sure he is ready for the latter end of the season because he is an important part of the squad.

“It’s important that we think of Munster, then leading into Edinburgh and Benetton away, which are the batch of games we’ve got to get everybody ready for.”

The Dragons scored nine tries in the 59-3 win against Timisoara in Newport, three in the first half to lead 17-3 and then six after the break.

READ MORE: Nine tries for Dragons in comfortable Euro rout

Talisman Back row forward Ollie Griffiths made his return from the knee injury he suffered in December as a replacement and fly-half/centre Gavin Henson showed some typically classy touches on his first outing since the opening day of the season after also being hindered by a knee issue.

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“We always knew that they would be a tough side to beat in the first half. Timisoara are a team that battles hard and it was important for us to open the game up in the second half,” said backs coach Maddocks.

“Overall we were really pleased with the win, we tried to keep the momentum going from the Christmas period.

“A lot of boys came in and did well and there were youngsters making their debuts – Ben Fry was really good and Chris Coleman was outstanding, which bodes well for the future.”

Caretaker boss Ceri Jones rang the changes for the clash against the Romanian minnows and is likely to bring back his big guns, including Wales forwards Cory Hill, Aaron Wainwright and Elliot Dee, for the clash with Clermont, who beat them 49-24 at the Stade Marcel Michelin in December.

The Top 14 leaders host Northampton this afternoon for Pool One top spot but Maddocks knows the Frenchmen will present a formidable challenge even if they leave their stars at home.

“It’s a completely different challenge to Timisoara, with the squad that they’ve got they could pick their first choice, second choice or third choice and bring a super-strong side to Rodney Parade,” he said.

“The good thing was that when we were out there it was a really good game and at one point we were just 35-24 down at in the game. Hopefully we will get a good crowd in and put another good performance in.”

Wing Dafydd Howells twisted his ankle in the opening stages of the loss to the Saracens, meaning man of the match Hallam Amos moved from midfield to the left wing.