Pro14: Ceri Jones to remain Dragons coach to end of 2018-19 season

Ceri Jones
Ceri Jones had expected to have a brief spell as Dragons' interim head coach
European Challenge Cup: Dragons v Clermont Auvergne
Venue: Rodney Parade, Newport Date: Friday, 18 January Kick-off: 19:30 GMT
Coverage: Live on BBC Radio Wales and on the BBC Sport app and website

Former Wales prop Ceri Jones will remain in charge of Dragons until the end of the 2018-19 season.

The 41-year-old was named interim boss when Dragons parted company with Bernard Jackman in December.

Dragons had hoped to bring in a permanent successor to Jackman this season, but chairman David Buttress confirmed Jones continuing this term.

"Ceri has done a great job leading the team with the support of our coaching group," said Buttress.

"Ceri has the full support of everyone at the region and it's clear the players are reacting positively to his leadership with performances full of heart, character and determination.

"We said before Christmas that we want to make a permanent appointment as soon as possible, but also that it has to be the right person for the region.

"Whilst the search for the permanent head coach is underway, our upturn in performances since Ceri took over has given us the opportunity to take our time."

Ceri Jones and Bernard Jackman
Ceri Jones was one of Bernard Jackman's assistant coaches at Dragons

Under former Ireland hooker Jackman, Dragons won two Pro14 games in his first season in charge, 2017-2018.

He left on 11 December having seen them win three games in 10 starts in this season's competition.

Since twice-capped Jones stepped in, Dragons have won two games, including a rare success against a Welsh Pro14 rival when they beat Ospreys 23-22 in late December.

There have also been Dragons defeats at Clermont Auvergne in the European Challenge Cup and a narrow Pro14 loss at local rivals Cardiff Blues, followed by defeat at Scarlets.

Dragons hammered Romanian side Timisoara in Europe last Friday, with a home date against Clermont Auvergne to come on Friday, 18 January as they bow out of this season's competition at the pool stage.

They return to Pro14 action against Munster at Rodney Parade on Saturday, 26 January, the first of Dragons' eight remaining games this season.

Versatile Wales back Hallam Amos said: "Games like against Timisoara we're expected to win, but against Clermont we can really put a marker down to Munster going into the last eight games of the season."

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