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In Pics: Connacht 15 Dragons 10

In Pics: Connacht 15 Dragons 10

Click here for photos from Connacht’s defeat of the Newport-Gwent Dragons in the Celtic League on Saturday.

Pictured above: Connacht winger Conor McPhillips, on as a second half replacement, is tackled by Dragons replacement Ben Breeze at the Sportsground. Saturday’s win was Connacht’s third in four Celtic League games.

The westerners, still bottom, face Cardiff (away), Edinburgh (home), Ospreys (home) and Glasgow (home) in the League run-in. They need to finish above the bottom ranked Welsh and Scottish sides (currently Glasgow and the Dragons) to claim a spot in the Heineken Cup qualification play-off.

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Connacht coach Michael Bradley watches on as his side chalk up their fifth home win on the trot. The former Ireland scrum half has urged his players to “utilise home advantage” in their final games of the season.

Rhys Thomas of the Dragons is tackled by Connacht’s New Zealand centre Gavin Williams. Saturday was the former Auckland and Southland player’s third start in a Connacht jersey.

Connacht flanker John Muldoon is confronted by Dragons duo Michael Owen and Craig Warlow. The 23-year-old Muldoon has played in 15 of the province’s 18 Celtic League ties so far this season, scoring the vital try in last month’s 11-9 victory at the Borders.

Dragons winger Nathan Brew is tackled by John Muldoon.

Connacht hooker John Fogarty tries to power through the challenges of Craig Warlow and Michael Owen.

Paul Warwick, pictured in the background to the left and playing at full-back against the Dragons, has got confirmation that he will not be able to gain eligibility to play for Ireland. The IRB has decreed that Warwick’s appearances for the Australian Sevens side count against him.

The Brisbane-born Warwick said in a recent interview: “The initial thought when I came over (in 2004) was that if there was a rule change I might be available for Ireland. But that hasn’t happened and it’s no real bother to me.

“It would have been nice to play international footy but it’s not to be. I become an Irish citizen at the end of next year so at least I’ll be classed as a local player, and that should make life easier for the club.

“So there was no real disappointment there because there was no real guarantee that I’d get picked anyway,” admitted the 25-year-old.

Connacht number 8 Colm Rigney is brought to the ground by Michael Owen and Jamie Ringer. The Laois man, who rejoined Connacht from Leeds Tykes last summer, turns 28 next Monday (April 24).

Connacht replacement prop Adrian Clarke is tackled by the Dragons’ Welsh international number 8 Michael Owen.

**All photos by Andrew Paton of Inpho Photography**