BOSS Dean Ryan is relishing another learning experience for his Dragons after securing a place in the European Challenge Cup quarter-finals.

The Rodney Parade region will learn their fate today when the line-up for the last eight is completed but they are sure to go on their travels.

A trip to France to face Toulon or Bordeaux-Begles is possible while it could also be a shorter trip across the Severn Bridge to face Bristol at Ashton Gate.

The Dragons earned their place in the quarters by beating Enisei-STM 47-5 and qualified as one of the best runners-up behind Castres, who beat Worcester at Sixways on a dramatic evening when any two of the three could have progressed.

READ MORE: The match report from Rodney Parade

The region have never lost a Challenge Cup quarter-final after beating Brive at Rodney Parade in 2007, Cardiff Blues in Newport in 2015 and Gloucester at Kingsholm in 2016.

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Director of rugby Ryan said: “I’d rather go on an away trip a bit further than Bristol! But from a playing perspective we are not worried who we get.

“There are some quality sides in there. This will be another experience that we can get better from.

“Staying in this tournament and playing good sides is part of that (learning experience) and is nice recognition of the lads working so hard as well.

“This group is in a development phase and is young, and they have probably exceeded some people’s expectations. We are enjoying ourselves and full credit to them for qualifying.”

The Dragons ran in seven tries to secure the bonus point against Enisei but crossed only twice in a drab, slow-paced first half dominated by the whistle of referee Joy Neville.

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“What I was really pleased about was that we had to take certain things away from the officiating and from Enisei,” said Ryan.

“It was just a case of getting field position and the five points rather than trying to play the game we are aspiring to play.

“Full credit to the senior group for working that out and staying patient, because that was frustrating. It's a difficult environment for coaching and playing when facing that.”

The Dragons don’t take to the field until hosting Benetton in the Guinness PRO14 on Saturday, February 15.

That gives time to attend to the walking wounded after three more injuries were suffered in the backs against Enisei-STM.

Wing Jared Rosser came off at half-time with an eye injury, centre Tyler Morgan pulled a muscle scoring the bonus-point try and wing Rio Dyer suffered a shoulder injury.

The Dragons are already without Ashton Hewitt (calf), Jordan Williams (knee), Will Talbot-Davies (wrist), Owen Jenkins (ankle) and Dafydd Howells (elbow) out wide.

“It’s getting ludicrous in the back three,” said Ryan. “When you have such a thin squad you end up playing lots of young men.

“They look great but it’s early in their career to play at this level and there is high risk of injury, which is playing out at the moment. We are thin on the ground.

“I am not used to having a three-week spell off in the middle of a season but I am pretty pleased we’ve got it now, that’s for sure.”