CARDIFF-BOUND Matthew Screech will play for the Dragons at the Arms Park on Sunday - with boss Dean Ryan expecting the lock to maintain his high standards despite going up against the side he will be joining.

The stalwart will leave Rodney Parade this summer after eight seasons, heading to the Dragons via Bedwas after being released by the Blues in 2013.

The 28-year-old from Porth has gone on to become a mainstay of the pack and will make his 162nd appearance on Sunday afternoon.

That tally that puts him a game away from joining Adam Black on fourth on the region's all-time list.

However, the second row forward has agreed to return to the capital – although the move is yet to be confirmed – and will make a final trip to the Arms Park in Dragons colours this weekend.

Screech has remained a key figure since the Dragons learnt he was moving on and director of rugby Dean Ryan has no qualms about him featuring in Cardiff.

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"He has been outstanding for us. I have got nothing but the highest compliments to pay to Matthew,” said Ryan.

"His conduct over this season has been outstanding and he will be playing this weekend, and we will expect the levels that we have always got from him.

"His improvements that I have seen over my time here are significant, so he will be missed."

The Dragons have signed Wales lock Will Rowlands, who was in a similar situation to Screech when he played for Wasps at Rodney Parade in December.

He will join Ben Carter, Joe Maksymiw, Joe Davies and Max Williams as options next season.

However, there is a frustration that their budget hasn’t allowed them to compete with the financial package that Cardiff have been able to offer Screech.

“I don’t understand a system that allows other people to pay considerably more money for a player that is in Wales,” said Ryan.

“This isn’t related to Matthew, it’s a system that we are set in that nobody seems to want to challenge or change.”

Free Press Series: OPPORTUNITY: Ioan DaviesOPPORTUNITY: Ioan Davies

The Dragons will also give a debut to full-back Ioan Davies, who joined on loan from the Blues in February.

The 21-year-old is playing for a contract at Rodney Parade and will get the chance to showcase his talent against his parent club.

“With the performances of Josh Lewis and Jordan Williams, he hasn't had as many opportunities as maybe we thought he would,” said Ryan.

“Now is a good chance to come into the environment and get his feet on the grass. He is really excited about the opportunity this weekend.

“It's always difficult to come to a club and not play. He just wants to get on the field with everybody and you feel part of something when you are able to get on the field and contribute.”