DRAGONS chairman David Buttress believes that “bold changes” need to be made to professional rugby in Wales.

The four regions – the Dragons plus Cardiff Blues, the Scarlets and Ospreys – have been locked in talks with the Welsh Rugby Union over a fresh agreement.

The quartet will continue as they are for next season but the future beyond that is uncertain, with the governing body keen to establish a professional team in the north with the Ospreys in the firing line.

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Buttress addressed the issue in his programme notes for the Dragons’ game against Ulster, although the former Just Eat chief executive wrote that he was unable to go into specifics and warned to take “most of what you read with a pinch of salt!”.

“The Professional Rugby Board meets regularly and everything has been on the table for discussion as we aim to leave no stone unturned to ensure we bring sustainability and success on and off the field,” he wrote.

“Any thorough review means that some radical and new ideas are aired. It is an exciting time for the professional game in Wales, I believe changes need to be made and we need to be bold in those changes.”

After apologising for being unable to give more detail – “I do appreciate that creates a vacuum” – Buttress pledged to fight for a strong deal for the WRU-owned Dragons.

“Rest assured we are working extremely hard to represent our interests and our vision to unite and inspire the people in Gwent to be proud Dragons,” he said.

The Dragons are condemned to finishing as the lowest Welsh region after a season that saw head coach Bernard Jackman sacked in December.

“It’s been a tough campaign but we’ve shown we can match any team on our day, with victory against the Ospreys in front of a partisan crowd the highlight among other successes over Edinburgh, Southern Kings and Zebre.

“It is important we also recognise some of this season’s home displays have been disappointing, too. However, this has only strengthened our resolve to keep building to create a winning and successful environment.”