Dougie Fife: Edinburgh eager for Dragons challenge

WINGER Dougie Fife says he is ready to shake off his injury frustrations and get stuck in as Edinburgh battle to halt their horror run of form.

Edinburgh Rugby player Dougie Fife at Murrayfield, Edinburgh. Picture: Jane Barlow

The three-cap Scotland back has not played since damaging a knee in the opening league victory over Munster four weeks ago.

Since then, the Gunners have endured three Guinness Pro12 losses - including hammerings by Ospreys and Ulster - out of four, with only the 20-20 draw against Scarlets a fortnight ago avoiding making it a nightmare clean-sweep of defeats.

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Fife, though, has now returned to full fitness and will start against Newport Gwent Dragons at BT Murrayfield on Saturday.

He said: “It’s been very frustrating having to watch the last four games and training from the sidelines. Now I just can’t wait to get back out with the team and help them get back to winning ways.

“Like all Welsh sides the Dragons are a very physical team. We’re looking forward to the challenge of the physicality they’ll bring on Saturday.”

Fife’s return is one of four changes to Alan Solomons’ side. The others see Tom Heathcote move from the bench to the stand-off berth and Alasdair Dickinson return at loosehead, with Hamish Watson back on the right flank.

Retaining his place at lock, Grant Gilchrist will make his 75th appearance for his club - he won his 50th cap last season in the PRO12 fixture also against Dragons.

The visitors have secured one win so far in this season’s tournament, at home in round four over Benetton Treviso, while their only victory on the road since February 2013 came in their most recent visit north of the border when they beat Glasgow Warriors 23-8 at Scotstoun last season.

Edinburgh, meanwhile, have won their last three matches against Dragons, most recently in April this year at Rodney Parade where they edged the home side 23-19.

Head coach Solomons said: “The Dragons are a well-balanced team with a good mixture of experience and youth. We are looking forward to meeting the challenge they will present.”