Paddy Wallace appears to be the only player being rested under IRFU guidelines so it looks as though Ulster are going to be able to put out a strong side.
FORWARDS: Nigel Brady, Brendon Botha, Bryan Young, Ed O’Donoghue, Andy Kyriacou, Stephen Ferris, Robbie Diack, Chris Henry, Willie Faloon, Tamaiti Horua, Tom Court, Dan Tuohy, Ryan Caldwell, Declan Fitzpatrick. BACKS: Timoci Nagusa, Darren Cave, Simon Danielli, Ian Whitten, Isaac Boss, Ian Humphreys, Andrew Trimble, Paul Marshall, Clinton Schifcofske, Niall O’Connor, Jonny Shiels.
My expectation is that Court will drop out of the pack, with Young starting and that Houra will start ahead of a benched Ferris. McLaughlin may also take the opportunity to start Henry and rest Faloon.
I think the coaching staff will have a good look at Brady this week after a few astray darts by Kyriacou last Saturday Personally I’d love to see Tuohy and O’Donoghue battle it out with Cullen and Hines, but I suspect that Caldwell will start.
In the backs Whitten will step in for Wallace with O’Connor and Danielli the likely cover on the bench.
With Leinster naming a 28 man squad we still have no indication as to how seriously they are going to take this one, but I hope that they put out as strong a team as they are allowed so we can gate a real gauge as to Ulster’s improvement ‘cos lets face it unless we put 60 past the Turnips next week we will have been judged to have gone backwards!
The FRU SELECT: (1-9) Young, Brady, Botha, Tuohy, O’Donoghue, Horua, Henry, Diack. (9- 15) Boss, Humphreys, Trimble, Whitten, Cave, Nagusa, Schifcofske. (16-22) Kyriacou, Fitzpatrick, Caldwell, Ferris, Marshall, O’Connor, Danielli.
Note that this game is now an all ticket match. .
The Rosie will be showing London Irish v Leicester live in the lounge before this game and they’ll be offering a great meal deal for all supporters. Details here.