Coming in to fill the void, the Dragons have recruited Jamaican pair Rebekah Robinson and Latanya Wilson, as well as O’Dwyer, who moves in the opposite direction to Nia Jones and Dyke, from Seven Stars.
Paige Kindred has arrived from champions Manchester Thunder, while Amy Clinton has joined from Loughborough Lightning. Former Wales age-group captain Sophie Morgan has returned to the Dragons after spells with both Thunder and Surrey Storm.
Drane insists it’s not just the Dragons who have experienced a major turnover in players. Other franchises have gone through similar upheavals as all teams adjust to the new rules on squad numbers.
Match day squads have been reduced from 12 to 10 players, meaning fewer opportunities for some players – although teams are now allowed to have five additional players as “training partners”.
“I think the league may be tighter this season,” adds Drane. “More players have moved because they wanted to be in that 10-player squad.
“Having those two extra spots in the wider group, gives more experience to players for development, which is really important.
“The Dragons have a few players who have been recruited from England, but that’s nothing new. A lot of players always used to come over the Bridge from Bath. Plus, we’ve very often taken a couple of players from overseas.
“I think they will be aiming for a higher finish than seventh. You never want to just stand still.
“But what’s really exciting is the new young players in the Wales long squad who have their opportunity. That keeps me feeling fresh and motivated. When you stop learning, it’s time to stop playing.”