THE Dragons have secured the return of Ireland Under-20s wing/full-back James McCarthy after he left Munster.

The 20-year-old from Newport has been given the chance to prove himself on a one-year development deal after heading back to Wales following two seasons in Ireland.

McCarthy came through the Dragons age-grade system and played for Wales Under-18s but the former Caerleon Comprehensive student was snapped up by Munster's academy in 2017.

The speedster, whose father is Irish, went on to wear the green jersey.

He played against Wales in the 2018 Six Nations, featured at last year's World Rugby U20 Championship in France and was a member of this season's Grand Slam winning squad.

McCarthy, who is not tied to Ireland because their capture team is the Wolfhounds, left Munster at the end of the season and will now press for a place in the senior Dragons squad.

The dangerous runner has been given a development contract for 2019/20 and will train with the firsts.

He will attempt to prove himself as a professional, joining his former Newport High School Old Boys teammates Josh Reynolds, Lennon Greggains and Rio Dyer in trying to impress new director of rugby Dean Ryan.

Campaign Series: CAPPED: James McCarthy was capped by Wales at age-grade level along with NHSOB teammates Josh Reynolds, Jake McDonald and Fraser StroudCAPPED: James McCarthy was capped by Wales at age-grade level along with NHSOB teammates Josh Reynolds, Jake McDonald and Fraser Stroud

Next season the Dragons will have Jordan Williams and Will Talbot-Davies as options at full-back while fit-again Ashton Hewitt, Jared Rosser, Dafydd Howells are the senior wings.

Dyer and Joe Goodchild have spent this season with Wales on the World Rugby Sevens Series and Deon Smith, scorer of a last-gasp Six Nations winner against England, is set to feature at the World Rugby U20 Championship.

The Dragons return for pre-season training on Monday, June 10 with McCarthy set to be among the transition squad rather than named among the seniors, with his first chance to impress coming for the A team in the Celtic Cup.

The prospect will hope to prosper from two years as part of the Munster set-up, which saw him working alongside the province's star names.

Campaign Series: James McCarthy, right) with Lennon Greggains and Corey Howells after a cup game between Bedwas and Cross KeysJames McCarthy, right) with Lennon Greggains and Corey Howells after a cup game between Bedwas and Cross Keys

"When I was first asked to train with the seniors, I was nervous," said McCarthy in 2018. "I just kept telling myself to do the basics right, and it's fine then.

"Keith Earls has been helping me out, and I've doing one on ones with Andrew Conway and Ronan O'Mahony. They've been helping me a lot."

McCarthy will hope his Irish spell can help him make a mark with his home region in order to earn a longer deal.