Guinness PRO12: Charlie Davies and Ed Jackson swap Wasps for Dragons
Lyn Jones continues to build an exciting squad at Rodney Parade after signing of Aviva Premiership duo for 2015/16
Newport Gwent Dragons have snapped up Wasps duo Charlie Davies and Ed Jackson for the 2015/16 season.
Director of rugby Lyn Jones is continuing his trend of signing a mix of young and experienced players as he continues his ambitious plans to make the Dragons one of the top Welsh regions.
It was an opportunity I couldn’t turn down and I look forward to playing in the [Guinness] PRO12 and helping them achieve success.
Davies, 24, began his career with Nottingham while a student at Nottingham Trent University before joining French giants Stade Francais, during which time he was called up to the England U20 squad for the Junior World Cup in 20xx.
The scrum-half, who will replace Bath Rugby-bound Jonathan Evans, will compete with fellow new signing Sarel Pretorius, and Luc Jones at Rodney Parade, and admitted it was an opportunity he couldn’t turn down.
“I’ve made friends for life at this club and it was a very difficult decision to leave, but it is the nature of the sport,” Davies said.
“I will join a Newport side who have a lot of young talented players and Lyn Jones is building a very good side there.
“It was an opportunity I couldn’t turn down and I look forward to playing in the [Guinness] PRO12 and helping them achieve success.
“First there is still plenty to achieve with Wasps, with a battle at the top of the Premiership and a European quarter-final to contest.”
A strong back-row ball carrier, Jackson previously played under the current Dragons management during his time at London Welsh.
They have a young squad there who are starting to come together and they look like another club moving in the right direction.
The 26-year-old former England U16 and U18 captain is a product of the Bath Rugby academy and had a brief spell with their first team before moving to Doncaster Knights and then the Exiles in 2012 before moving to Wasps in 2013.
The powerful ball carrier has captained the England U18s squad and U16s squad, during his time in Bath rugby’s academy. The back row signed a full-time contract with Bath in 2007 and made his debut for them against Leicester Tigers in 2008.
“I played with the Newport coaching staff while I was at London Welsh and I’m looking forward to working with them again,” Jackson said.
“They have a young squad there who are starting to come together and they look like another club moving in the right direction.
“I’m looking forward to getting stuck into the task next season, but there is obviously a lot at stake at Wasps this season, which I am fully focused on contributing to in every way that I can.”
Wasps director of rugby Dai Young paid tribute to the pair, who decided to move away from the Ricoh Arena to seek more game time.
“Charlie has been with the club for five seasons, during which time he has developed from a young player straight out of the England U20s set-up into a very accomplished scrum-half,” said Young
“He has been an important member of this squad and I have no doubt that he will go from strength to strength with Newport.
“Ed has also made a big impact since arriving at the club in 2013.
“In what is a very competitive back-row grouping, he has been unlucky not to feature more but he has acquitted himself very well during his time in black and gold and we wish him all the best at the Dragons.
“Both players have been very valuable members of the squad in their time here.
“I totally understand their decision to move to try to get more regular first team rugby and I wish them both all the best in the next steps in their careers.”