Newport-Gwent Dragons set for name alteration

It comes amid a takeover by the Welsh Rugby Union

Newport-Gwent Dragons, Pro 12

©INPHO/James Crombie

Welsh rugby union team Newport-Gwent Dragons are set for a name change from next season.

The Welsh Pro 12 side are set to be taken over by the Welsh Rugby Union from July 1st.

The deal will also see the WRU take control of the side's Rodney Parade Ground, while their name will be formally changed to The Dragons, dropping Newport-Gwent from the title.

In comments on the Dragons' official website, WRU Group chief executive Martyn Phillips spoke about the need to safeguard the future of the regional team and Newport RFC.

“All parties recognise that from an NGD perspective significant improvement is required on and off the pitch and that it is now time to take a different approach," he said.

“This investment is equally designed to safeguard Newport RFC and its rich history at Rodney Parade and provides a long term programme where we focus on putting in solid foundations to ensure a sustainable and successful team in the region.

“Without this action the future of both the NGD and Newport RFC is at best uncertain, along with the existence of Rodney Parade.

“There is still a lot of hard work to be completed before the proposed transaction proceeds, but it is important to recognise that there will be no magic wand.

“We have put together the very best package we can for rugby in Gwent, but there is clearly still work to be done and there is an ongoing process of due diligence to be followed in order to achieve the best outcome for Welsh Rugby."

He confirmed plans to change the name to Dragons in a media briefing.

Dragons haven't finished in the Top 6 places in the Pro 12 (formerly Celtic League) since 2004-05.