Ulster play Munster at a sold-out Ravenhill this Friday, 30th December.
Many of the young players who faced Leinster yesterday evening at the RDS (42-13) have been named in the provisional squad which also includes the more experienced players that McLaughlin rested for the away trip to Leinster, with the festive clash against Munster at HQ just four days later. Ulster’s Ireland internationals are not available for selection for this match.
The Ulster starting XV and replacements will be named at 12 noon on Thursday (29th Dec).
FORWARDS: John Afoa, Paddy McAllister, Adam Macklin, Callum Black, Jerry Cronin, Nigel Brady, Andi Kyriacou, Niall Annett, Johann Muller, Lewis Stevenson, Tim Barker, Dan Tuohy, Neil McComb, Willie Faloon, Chris Henry, Pedrie Wannenburg, Robbie Diack, Ali Birch
BACKS: Adam D’Arcy, Stefan Terblanche, Peter Nelson, Simon Danielli, Chris Cochrane, Michael Allen, Craig Gilroy, Ian Whitten, Darren Cave, Chris Farrell, Ian Humphreys, Ruan Pienaar, Ian Porter, Paul Marshall
It must be tough being an Academy/Ravens player over the holiday season. You get little or no financial reward, fit in training round your work or studies and slot in with your allotted club whenever you can only to be sent down to Dublin to take a beating on behalf of the seniors and then spend the rest of the week acting as tackle bags for the well rested first teamers!
It’s not easy for the first teamers either, after all they have 13 or possibly 14 games to fit in over the next 22 weeks, will the relentless punishment never stop? How can top class athletes be expected to perform when they have to play four games before the next 20 day break? Hmm!
From last nights fiasco I’d like to see Black, Diack, Nelson, Allen and Farrell all get another run out, but that’s unlikely to happen, though Black and Diack should make the subs bench.