RaboDirect PRO12
Dragons sign Clermont full-back Byrne
ESPN Staff
January 6, 2014
Byrne enjoyed a successful tenure at Clermont © Getty Images
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Newport Gwent Dragons have been handed a boost ahead of next season after confirming they have lured Wales international duo Lee Byrne and Aled Brew to return home from France, according to Wales Online.

The club fought off competition from fellow RaboDirect Pro12 club Cardiff Blues to land Byrne - still rated as one of the best full-backs in the world - from Top 14 leaders Clermont Auvergne. The 33-year-old last appeared for Wales at the 2011 World Cup but has 46 international caps to his name, and lined up for the British & Irish Lions in South Africa for the first Test in 2009 before injury cruelly brought his tour to an end.

Byrne is currently out of action with a dislocated shoulder suffered on Heineken Cup duty but has been a success at the Top 14 club, though age has finally counted against him with the club looking to nurture younger talent. The acquisition gives full-back Dan Evans competition for the No. 15 jersey at Rodney Parade, and is a big boost for Lyn Jones' ambitions for the Dragons to become Wales' top regional side.

The club have also signed wing Brew, who has nine Wales caps to his name, back to the club after a two-year stint with French strugglers Biarritz. Brew made 108 appearances for the club in three years before his switch to Top 14.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd

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